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Gophers blow big lead, hang on to beat Missouri State in Puerto Rico

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Gophers 74

Missouri State 69

It wasn't a thing of beauty, but the Gophers held on to beat Missouri State 74-69 Friday morning in the consolation side of the bracket at the Puerto Rico Tip-Off. Minnesota led by as many as 16 points in the second half before Missouri State was able to make it a game down the stretch.

1. King on fire from 3

Joey King battled foul trouble – as most of the Gophers did – but connected on six 3-pointers to lead Minnesota with 18 points on 6-of-8 shooting (6-of-7 on 3-point attempts). Minnesota hit 13 3-pointers in the game.

2. Too many freebies

If not for the hot shooting from deep the Gophers might have lost to the inferior Bears. Missouri State was able to draw 22 fouls on the Gophers and it resulted in a plentiful day at the free-throw line, where they went 26-for-37.

3. Two more days in San Juan

The victory earned the Gophers one more game in the early-season tournament. They'll play at 1:30 p.m. Sunday against the winner of Friday's game between Texas Tech and Mississippi State.

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