Published December 02, 2012
| Sports Network
Columbia, MO – Laurence Bowers posted 23 points and five rebounds as No. 16 Missouri took an easy 72-56 win over Appalachian State.
Earnest Ross gave 13 points and nine rebounds, Keion Bell donated 12 points, six rebounds, four assists and three steals while Tony Criswell posted 10 points for the Tigers (6-1), who have won two straight after a loss to Louisville.
"I thought it was a great game for us. I thought we came out with great intent on both ends of the court. Defensively, we were really good," Missouri coach Frank Haith said.
Jay Canty posted a game-high 29 points along with six rebounds for the Mountaineers (1-6), who have dropped six straight since opening the season with a win over Montreat.
Missouri led this game from start to finish as Bowers scored the first seven points of the game, including a 3-pointer for a 7-0 lead 1 1/2 minutes in.
A Bell dunk halfway through the first 20 minutes staked the Tigers to a 23-9 advantage and it reached 24 points on a Bowers jumper with under two minutes to play.
Appalachian State ran off the final six points of the first half to make it a 39-21 game at the break.
The Mountaineers scored the first four points of the second half to get within 14, but that's as close as it got as the Tigers scored the next seven points.
Missouri led by as many as 25 points in the second half while Appalachian State closed the game with a 9-2 run to make it respectable.
"The biggest thing is that we fought and we competed," said Appalachian State coach Jason Capel. "Missouri's stronger, but today was about us getting better and us preparing to be a team in our league that can compete for a championship. I thought, in that sense, we got better."
Missouri shot 49.2 percent and pulled down 45 rebounds while Appalachian State hit just 35.6 percent of its shots and grabbed 31 rebounds ... This was the first meeting between these two schools ... Missouri hosts SE Missouri State on Tuesday.