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Laurence Bowers injured against Alabama in Missouri’s SEC debut

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(USA Today Sports Images)

Missouri might have suffered a huge loss in its first win in the Southeastern Conference.

The 10th-ranked Tigers pulled away from Alabama late Tuesday night to win 84-68 in its debut but it did so with leading scorer Laurence Bowers on the bench with a knee injury.

Bowers scored 16 points and snagged five rebounds but appeared to knock knees with an opponent and left the game with 6 minutes, 19 seconds remaining and headed to the locker room.

"It looks like an MCL sprain maybe, but we don’t know the extent of it and they’re gonna look at it tomorrow,” Missouri coach Frank Haith told PowerMizzou.com

Bowers missed all of last season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee. The injury Tuesday appeared to be to his right knee.

Bowers did not speak with reporters before leaving Mizzou Arena. His status should be cleared up Wednesday. He is averaging nearly 17 points a game this season. His ability to play inside and on the perimeter makes him a matchup nightmare for most opponents.

The Tigers obviously have numerous other options and several of them came through with big games the first time out in the SEC. Jabari Brown scored a career-high 22 points and Earnest Ross added 19. Those two players both went 1-for-9 in the Tigers win over Bucknell last week.

Brown is proving to be versatile and an extremely valuable part of the Missouri plan. Haith praised his defense against Alabama and has started experimenting with using Brown as an option to bring the ball up the court and distribute when point guard Phil Pressey needs a rest. Brown played a team high 37 minutes against the Crimson Tide.

Pressey had another solid game with 11 points and 13 assists.

Follow Kyle on Twitter @KyleRingo

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