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Missouri Cements Contender Status With Win Over Baylor

The one chink in the armor of the Missouri Tigers was whether or not they could go on the road against a top-flight opponent and pull out a victory. The Tigers made their statement on Saturday defeating No. 3 Baylor 89-88 in Waco, Texas. Their reward will be a likely No. 2 ranking behind Kentucky when the new polls are released on Monday.

The victory was the first road win for the Tigers over a Top 5 team since 1994 when they defeated then No. 4 Kansas 81-74. Always strong at home, the signature road win had been missing until Saturday.

To elicit even more praise on Frank Haith is how this Tigers team is overcoming lack of depth and a lack of size along the front line. The team lost forward Laurence Bowers during the preseason to a torn ACL which left only Ricardo Ratliffe as a true frontcourt player.

The Bowers injury forced Haith to play essentially a four guard lineup surrounding Ratliffe. The result on Saturday was Ratliffe scoring a career-high 27 points and the Tigers out rebounding a Baylor team that averaged a three-inch height advantage across the front line.