Missouri 72, No. 12 Oklahoma St. 69 - NewsOn6.com - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - KOTV.com |

Missouri 72, No. 12 Oklahoma St. 69

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COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) _ Kareem Rush made up for one of his poorest shooting games of the season when he stepped to the free-throw line with 6.9 seconds to go.

Rush was only 3-for-15 and scored 10 points, two above his season worst and 10 below his average, in Missouri's 72-69 victory over No. 12 Oklahoma State on Monday night. But his pair of free throws sealed the victory, giving the Tigers a five-point lead.

``Those shots could have fallen either way, but I'm going to stay confident and I want the ball in my hands in the end,'' Rush said. ``I stepped up there and made the free throws.

``That's what I needed to do and I did it.''

Arthur Johnson had 18 points and 14 rebounds as Missouri (20-9, 9-6 Big 12) overcame a 10-point first-half deficit and poor shooting from Rush and Clarence Gilbert, who had only six points coming off a 40-point game.

The pair combined to go 6-for-28 but it didn't stop their teammates from rallying in a game they probably needed more than Oklahoma State (22-7, 9-6), which had a four-game winning streak snapped.

``If someone would have told me that we would hold Gilbert and Rush to 6-of-28 shooting, I would have said we win the game by double figures,'' coach Eddie Sutton said. ``We missed a lot of easy shots that we just can't afford to miss against a quality team like Missouri.''

Rickey Paulding added 21 points on 10-of-12 shooting, including two baskets in the final minute. Rush was 3-for-15 but also sealed the win, getting the rebound after Johnson missed on the front end of a bonus and hitting two free throws to make it 72-67 with 6.9 seconds to go.

``It's the first time in a long time that I got double-teamed so much whenever I got the ball,'' Rush said. ``I expect that, and I expect other guys to step up, and A.J. (Johnson) and Rickey did it tonight.''

Victor Williams had 19 points, and Fredrik Jonzen 16 for Oklahoma State. Jonzen had 10 points in the final 7:42 as the Cowboys kept it close after falling behind by seven.

``We gave the game to them,'' Jonzen said. ``I don't want to take away anything from Missouri, but whatever you want to call it, they took the game from us or we gave it to them, a loss is a loss.''

Cheyne Gadson had 12 points in the first half, nearly doubling his season average, but was shut out the rest of the way.

Missouri ended a three-game losing streak against Oklahoma State, beating the Cowboys for only the second time in seven games.

``I thought we stayed together down the stretch and made a couple of plays,'' coach Quin Snyder said. ``We made plays, and that's what it comes down to.''

Missouri trailed by 10 twice in the first half, the last time at 31-21 with 5:05 to go after failing to block out on a follow shot by Ivan McFarlin.

Down nine at the half, Missouri outscored Oklahoma State 17-5 in the first 9 1/2 minutes after the break to take a three-point lead _ its first since the opening minute.

Rush got his first points of the game on a jumper from near the free-throw line with 19:16 to go. Johnson's dunk after Travon Bryant's shot was partially blocked put the Tigers in front for the first time, 44-43, with 11:07 left.

Rush had no points, no assists and three fouls in the first half as Oklahoma State took a 38-29 lead. The Cowboys had runs of 9-0 and 10-2, and Gadson got several wide-open looks from long range, going 5-for-6.
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