COLUMBIA | Leo Lyons returned to the starting lineup in a big way, throwing down a career-high 30 points as Missouri finished off Baylor 89-72 Saturday.
The victory boosted Missouri to 14-0 at Mizzou Arena, 18-4 overall and to 5-2 in the Big 12 Conference.
That is good for third in the league standings, behind 7-0 Oklahoma and 6-0 Kansas.
Lyons went to the bench following a one-game suspension for multiple traffic violations. This was his first start in five games, all Big 12 Conference contests.
He made it the most memorable game of his four seasons at Missouri. He hit his first eight shots of the game and finished eight of 11. He connected on 14 of 15 free throws. He grabbed six rebounds and had two assists.
Lyons — an All-Big 12 preseason honorable mention pick along with teammate DeMarre Carroll — connected on all five shots from the field and three of four from the free throw line on the way to 13 first-half points.
Missouri needed every one of those points, leading at the half only 40-39.
Baylor, 15-6 overall and 3-4 in the Big 12, took the lead 41-40 on the first basket of the second half.
With 5 minutes, 31 seconds to play, Missouri led only 68-67.
In the final five and a half minutes, Missouri out-scored the Bears 21-5.
Lyons scored his 1,000th career point on the first of two free throws with two minutes to play.
Lyons was not the only star for Missouri. Junior guard J.T. Tiller dished out eight assists and had seven rebounds on the way to 10 points. Carroll — hitting 11 of 13 free throws — scored 25 points with nine rebounds.
Baylor star guard Curtis Jerrells scored only five points on two of 10 shooting. Kevin Rogers led the Bears with 18 points.