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Cougars get by barrier

JACKSON, Tenn. — Most coaches say regular season wins and accomplishments are nice, but a team is ultimately measured by its postseason success.

The Columbia College women’s basketball team beat Wayland Baptist 71-57 Thursday in the first round of the NAIA Championship Tournament at Oman Arena. The Cougars were beaten in the first round the past two seasons despite winning the American Midwest Conference both years.

Three Tigers advance in NCAA Tournament

ST. LOUIS — Jeremy Spates got a little help from a muscle cramp.

Spates (24-6) won at 149 pounds in the second round of the NCAA Tournament on Thursday in St. Louis, defeating Oklahoma’s Jeff Ecklof 3-2.

MU football staff, hostesses quiet about recruiting policy

Although Big 12 Conference officials are publicly expressing concerns about the state of recruiting practices, Missouri football officials are keeping their concerns private.

With problems in the Big 12’s athletic programs mounting, its presidents and chancellors passed a resolution a week ago that will ask every school to do a thorough evaluation of their recruiting practices.

New routine

While getting ready for the Cat Classic in February, Alisha Robinson and Lauren Schwartzman watched a movie about football.

Missouri set a school record with a 197.350 at the meet. Schwartzman won the balance beam competition and tied with Robinson for the vault title. Robinson won the all-around.

Centralia prevails in overtime

With 15 minutes left in the third quarter, Centralia led 54-38 and Panthers coach David Meyers was ready to celebrate.

“I thought there was a chance we might go ahead and run away,” Meyers said.

New basketball arena to be called Paige Sports Arena

MU's new basketball arena will be named the Paige Sports Arena, University officials announced today. The arena will be named after Paige Laurie, daughter of Bill and Nancy Laurie, who donated $25 million toward the construction of the $75 million athletic facility.

Tigers to be tested

The differences between Missouri and Stanford, its opponent in the first round of the women’s NCAA Tournament, are striking.

The Tigers are thrilled to be a No. 11 seed and in the tournament for the third time in the past 17 years; the Cardinal are an NCAA Tournament institution making their 17th straight tournament appearance.

Seniors focus on positives

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Cataloging the disappointments and unmet expectations for Missouri’s four seniors could require a lengthy list after this season, but it’s one record senior power forward Travon Bryant isn’t keeping.

After the Tigers’ season ended with a 65-64 loss to Michigan in the first round of the National Invitation Tournament on Tuesday, Bryant’s last game as a Tiger brought back memories of the season’s firsts.

Kewpies test new lineup

It is not often that teams sit down for fruit and cookies after a game.

Soccer players switching teams at halftime and not wearing uniforms are also rare.

Redbirds rally to beat Tigers

Illinois State did something Wednesday it has never done against the Missouri baseball team: win.

The Redbirds beat the Tigers 5-2 in 11 innings at Taylor Stadium, notching their first win in five tries against Missouri (15-4-1).

Ragged field slows Bruins

When a team plays its first scrimmage, it’s usually the players, rusty from a year away from the sport, that mar a pristine field. On Wednesday in Rock Bridge’s Green and Gold game, though, it was the field that marred the Bruins’ play. Straw and seeding used to patch the Bruins’ soggy field created obstacles for the Bruins.

“I could see their passes were coming along and there was good movement away from the ball,” coach Marc Van Dover said, “given the conditions.”

Tough schedule assists Cougars

Recently, NCAA men’s basketball teams such as St. Joseph’s and Gonzaga have improved the strength of their nonconference schedules to compensate for their relatively weak conferences.

The Columbia College women’s basketball team used a similar strategy this season. The No. 17 Cougars (27-7) have dominated the American Midwest Conference in the program’s three-year history but lost in the first round of the NAIA Championship Tournament in 2002 and 2003.

Centralia seeks another championship

Adam Hinspeter and Centralia are after another title.

Four months after he led the Panthers to the Class 2 football title as a quarterback, Hinspeter will try to earn a state basketball title as a guard.

Tigers expect success

Before every wrestling tournament Missouri coach Brian Smith does a little shopping.

After he gets a shopping list, Smith buys numerous items for his team. The list usually includes bananas, power bars and Jeremy Spates’ cinnamon Pop-Tarts.

Roark to shine in Las Vegas

Soccer is not exactly the game that made Las Vegas famous.

For Rock Bridge’s Emily Roark and some of Missouri’s other top high school soccer players, though, soccer will be the main attraction to their visit there this weekend.

NIT-MARE

ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Missouri, as it had all season, found itself in a position to win. Similar to a lot of games, it slipped away.

Michigan, playing without its leading scorer, scrapped its way to a 65-64 win against Missouri in the first round of the National Invitation Tournament on Tuesday at Crisler Arena.

Clemons repeats he took money

Ricky Clemons, a former Missouri basketball player, reaffirmed on an HBO show Tuesday night that while playing for the Tigers, he and two former teammates received cash from coaches Quin Snyder and Tony Harvey.

“I never got more than $500 at a time,” Clem-ons said in an interview with James Brown, a correspondent for HBO’s Real Sports. “I never kept up with it. I just received the money.”

No worries with Askren

Ben Askren’s jovial attitude makes him lethal on the mat.

Askren, a redshirt freshman ranked fifth in the nation at 174 pounds, is known as the clown of the Missouri wrestling team. Askren said his lightheartedness helps him relax before matches.

Detroit duo disappointed in finale

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Less than an hour’s drive from where two of Missouri’s brightest stars set out for Columbia with college basketball dreams spinning in their 18-year-old heads, Rickey Paulding’s and Arthur Johnson’s careers ended as a nightmare.

Johnson topped off his game-high 26 points with a basket that pulled the Tigers within 65-64 of Michigan with one-tenth of a second left to play, but time had run out on the Tigers in the first-round game of the National Invitation Tournament.

Brutal Big 12 schedule boosts Tigers

Finishing below .500 in conference play normally ruins a team’s NCAA Tournament hopes.

For Missouri, going 7-9 in the Big 12 Conference and finishing in a three-way tie for seventh are main reasons it is heading to Tempe, Ariz., to face Stanford in the first round of the NCAA Tournament at 10:30 p.m. Saturday.

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