BY: Mark Kim
ATLANTA – The Missouri Tigers exited the SEC Tournament Friday after a 72-49 loss to the Florida Gators.
“They’re an experienced club and they play unselfish basketball,” said head coach Frank Haith.
After coming into the second half tied at 29, the Gators’ shooting came alive. They made 57.1% of their shots while making six of nine three pointers.
“When they got those turnovers, they hit some threes,” said Missouri junior guard Jabari Brown.
The Gators’ shooting charge was led by senior guard Scottie Wilbekin, who made five of six three point shots on the day.
“He made shots when he was open,” said Missouri junior guard Jordan Clarkson. “He did what he did and he played well tonight.”
Wilbekin didn’t think the shooting was the most important aspect of their comeback.
“Especially if we make threes, we can get separation,” said Wilbekin. “But it’s about making stops.”
And the Tigers were stopped right in their tracks. They shot 31.6% from the field while making no three pointers in the second half.
Clarkson didn’t see too much of an adjustment by Florida coming out of halftime.
“They ran a little more zone in the second half,” said Clarkson. “That’s the only thing I’ve seen.”
With the loss, the Tigers’ hopes of making the NCAA Tournament are in serious doubt. Junior forward Ryan Rosburg didn’t think this game was the Tigers’ last chance to make the tournament.
“”We had chances all year,” Rosburg said in an interview with the St. Louis Dispatch.
Brown is unsure about the team’s postseason future, saying that only time will tell.
“We’ll see Sunday,” Brown said.