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Cunningham leads Missouri over No. 5 Mississippi St 75-67

February 15, 2019

STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) — Sophie Cunningham scored 24 points, Amber Smith added 16 and Missouri upset No. 5 Mississippi State 75-67 on Thursday night.

The game remained tight until the final minute when Cierra Porter made a 3-pointer with 41 seconds left — her first points of the game — to give Missouri a six-point advantage.

Missouri (19-7, 8-4 Southeastern Conference) trailed for much of the night, but pulled ahead 55-54 on Akira Levy’s layup at the third-quarter buzzer. The Tigers pushed their advantage 60-56 early in the fourth quarter and never trailed again, fending off multiple Mississippi State rallies.

Missouri shot 55 percent from the field and made 11 3-pointers.

Mississippi State (22-2, 10-1) had its 12-game winning streak snapped. The Bulldogs also had won 26 straight regular-season SEC games dating to last season.

Anriel Howard led the Bulldogs with 21 points. Teaira McCowan added 12 points and 13 rebounds.

Mississippi State needed Andra Espinoza-Hunter’s midrange jumper at the buzzer to take a 35-34 halftime lead. Howard led the Bulldogs with 11 points before the break. Cunningham had 13.

2,000 POINTS

Missouri’s Cunningham passed 2,000 points for her career with a 3-pointer during the second quarter. The 6-foot-1 guard has been a consistent scorer throughout her career, scoring 448 points as a freshman, 541 as a sophomore and 574 as a junior. She already has 452 points this season.

BIG PICTURE

Missouri: It’s a huge win for the Tigers, who had lost their previous four road games. Cunningham was excellent as usual and she got a lot of help from her teammates. The Tigers now have a 2-7 record against Mississippi State.

Mississippi State: The Bulldogs had a tough night on both ends of the floor, but especially on defense. The Tigers got a lot of open looks from 3-point range and made a bunch of them. Mississippi State has another tough game on Sunday against Texas A&M.

UP NEXT

Missouri: Hosts Tennessee on Sunday.

Mississippi State: At No. 22 Texas A&M on Sunday.

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