Missouri wallops Northern Illinois 97-61 in men's basketball

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

COLUMBIA, Mo. -- Missouri coach Mike Anderson took over a down program and started recruiting players based on trust that he would turn things around when he arrived at Missouri five years ago.

That's exactly what he's done 100 wins later.

Marcus Denmon scored 24 points and Matt Pressey added a career-high 18 to help Anderson became the fastest coach to reach 100 wins in school history with Monday night 97-61 blow out of Northern Illinois.

"For most of us, we came here on coach Anderson's word," Tigers junior Laurence Bowers said. "Now to be a part of him winning 100 games is special to me, and I know for our guys as well."

Missouri went on a 17-0 run to start the game and held the largest halftime lead against a Division I opponent in school history at 40 points.

The Tigers connected on 69 percent of their shots and scored a season-best 57 points in the opening frame.

The Tigers finished with 26 assists on 37 field goals.

"We certainly played efficient basketball with 16 assists at halftime," Anderson said. "That's become the staple of what we do."

Pressey's career-best performance came in his second consecutive start after his brother Phil Pressey broke his right ring finger during practice last Sunday.

Both Pressey brothers entered the starting lineup after sophomore Michael Dixon was suspended two games for violating an undisclosed team rule. Dixon since has been reinstated but has come off the bench after starting the first nine games of the season.

He finished with eight points and a team-high eight assists.

"Coming in to this game, I wanted to be more assertive on the offensive and defensive end," Matt Pressey said. "My brother going down kind of hurt us, but I knew I had to step up and try to run the team."

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