March Sadness :(
A season that once seemed so promising came to a sputtering end on Thursday night, matching the weeks-long slide that preceded it.
After a NCAA Tournament snub that left them playing for pride in the Women’s National Invitational Tournament, Robin Pingeton’s Tigers quickly bowed out of postseason play, dropping their opening round game to the Drake Bulldogs 83-75 in overtime.
The Tigers (18-13) were led by Aijha Blackwell’s 27 points, including her basket that tied the score at 66-66 and forced overtime.
Blackwell added 10 rebounds for yet another double-double in the game. Hayley Frank endured a tough night, finishing with 11 points on 10 shots from the field, while freshman Izzy Higginbottom flashed a bit of brilliance, cashing in 14 on 9 shots in 31 minutes played. Higginbottom’s performance especially impressed our very own Lauren Rosenberg.
What I think the best part of Izzy’s performance tonight was it showed she’s not afraid to drive or pull up from the midrange. Normally, you’d expect a 5’7 player to stay mainly on the perimeter and sprinkle in a few drives here and there. Higginbottom showed there’s a whole other side of her skill set that was just waiting to make its debut.
On paper, next year’s team should contend for an NCAA bid and, in all honesty, probably expect to earn one. Pingeton’s team will only lose LaDazhia Williams to graduation (Haley Troup is exercising her Covid year), but should return Blackwell, Frank and Lauren Hansen for their final seasons. Higginbottom will be a sophomore and the Tigers will welcome 4-star freshman and local high school star Averi Kroenke to the program.
No doubt the team will be stinging all offseason after only collecting six wins through January, February and March. It’s up to Pingeton to get them motivated for a bounceback campaign.
Yesterday at Rock M
- In which y’all decide which Young Blood and Steady Riser you want to see move through our coaching bracket
- In which Jerome Tang and Thad Matta square up in round two of said tournament
- In which Chris Holtmann and Dana Altmann consider their plush D1 gigs for Missouri... again, in said coaching search bracket
- In which Aidan Shaw decides to look around while Missouri figures out who the next coach is going to be
- In which Kortay preview’s Mizzou Baseball’s conference opening series against the mighty Vanderbilt
- In which Lauren previews Mizzou Basketball’s WNIT opener against Drake and recaps the game after it ends in a heart-breaking OT loss.
- Mizzou Football’s staff is getting a a little bigger and more experienced.
SOURCE: Former LSU assistant Derek Shay who coached tight ends and played a key role in scheming up the Tigers win over UF, is expected to become an offensive analyst at Mizzou. Prior to LSU he was the TE coach at McNeese State.— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) March 18, 2022
- Positive football news is always good, but especially when you’ve got visitors in town. And I’m not just talking about JT Daniels.
- At the Post-Dispatch, Ben Frederickson and Dave Matter wrote dueling columns about which candidates Mizzou should converge on. BenFred is wondering if maybe Kimmie is the right call, while Matter thinks the Tigers would be a good fit for Chris Holtmann, who may be getting uncomfy in Columbus.
- Chris Kwiecinski wrote about Shaw’s decommitment, which leaves Mizzou Hoops’ 2022 class thin... but could still include Shaw depending on the new coach.
- Mizzou may not have a coach yet, but its players are still out here hoopin’
Here’s something that might warm some Mizzou fans’ hearts: after the women lost to Drake tonight, Kaleb Brown, DaJuan Gordon, and Trevon Brazile all came to Mizzou Arena to play basketball together. pic.twitter.com/WHkUy9KoRH— Madeline Carter (@fleetwood_mads) March 18, 2022
- Two sessions are down at the NCAA Wrestling Championships, and Mizzou has some catching up to do. The Tigers are sending seven wrestlers to the finals, but still sit in just 14th place as a team after day one.
- Mizzou Women’s Swim and Dive has some brand new All Americans after the second day of the NCAA Championships!
- Wanted to end links today by saying thanks to Lauren Rosenberg for covering the Mizzou women’s basketball team this season. It was a hell of a campaign to follow, from the shocking upset over South Carolina to the late season dramatics that led to a NCAA snub and early WNIT exit, and Lauren did it better than anyone I’ve known since I got to Rock M. Drop a “thank you” in the comments for them for upping our coverage here!
- If you’re looking to sign up for ESPN+, Rock M Nation now has an affiliate link: click Here for ESPN+ Now!
- If you’re looking to sign up for a new streaming service, you can try FuboTV: click HERE for FuboTV access — FuboTV now has ESPN, CBS, FS1 and more sports channels.
(** RockMNation has affiliate partnerships. These do not influence editorial content, though RockMNation may earn commissions for products purchased via affiliate links.**)