Missouri women's basketball prepares for visit from No. 25 Georgia

Wednesday, January 8, 2014 | 10:17 p.m. CST
Missouri guard Lianna Doty dribbles past a defender during the game against Western Illinois on Dec. 22 at Mizzou Arena.

COLUMBIA — After a close game against Arkansas on Sunday, life doesn't get any easier for the Missouri women's basketball team. The Tigers face their first ranked opponent of the season when they take on No. 25 Georgia at Mizzou Arena 0n Thursday night.

The Tigers are coming off a game in which they struggled offensively. They finished Sunday's 69-66 loss to Arkansas shooting 38.6 percent against the nation's best defense. Arkansas has held opponents to an average of 44.6 points per game this season.

While the Tigers managed to score the most points against Arkansas this season, the offensive woes came from missed open opportunities. With another tough defensive team coming into town, Missouri (12-3, 1-1 SEC) knows the importance of taking advantage of the open chances.

"The offense always looks better when you're knocking down shots, but we had some great looks in the first half that we didn't finish," Missouri coach Robin Pingeton said after Sunday's game. "Every shot counts and every possession matters."

Sophomore point guard Lianna Doty echoed her coach.

"Every possession counts," Doty said. "You have to hit those tough shots, you have to control the tempo. … It's all those little details which we keep stressing … we're just gonna keep getting better at."

With Missouri's next two games against ranked teams, No. 25 Georgia on Thursday and No. 9 Kentucky on Sunday, the Tigers have a chance to improve against tough opponents.

Missouri's Morgan Eye tied Alyssa Hollins' school record for 3-pointers made when she hit her 226th career 3-pointer at the end of the Arkansas game. The junior guard looks to break the record against Georgia. Eye has made at least one 3-pointer in all but two games this season.

Despite losing the last two games, Georgia (12-3, 0-2 SEC) enters Thursday's contest with the third-best defense in the Southeastern Conference, allowing opponents an average 53.7 points per game. The Lady Bulldogs beat the Tigers 77-46 last season in Athens, Ga., and hold a 3-1 all-time series record.

Thursday's tipoff is set for 7 p.m. Tickets from the Arkansas game are redeemable for admission to Thursday's game because of Sunday's severe weather conditions.

Supervising editor is Wade Livingston

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