COLUMBIA, Mo. — The Missouri Tigers were able to hang on for a 23-19 victory, avoiding the upset against Middle Tennessee.

Middle Tennessee gave the Tigers everything they could handle down the stretch. The game started out with four straight punts before Mizzou got on the board with a Harrison Mevis 38-yard field goal in the first quarter.

Middle Tennessee responded a few drives later with on a Nicholas Vattiato 3-yard touchdown pass to Kalani Norris to go up 7-3.

Mizzou regained the lead on their next possession after QB Brady Cook ran in a 1-yard touchdown. The Tigers took a 10-7 lead into the half.

The Blue Raiders tied things up to open the second half on a Zeke Rankin 25-yard field goal.

That is when the Mizzou offense started to find its rhythm, scoring on their next two drives, including a 49-yard touchdown pass from Cook to Nathaniel Peat on a wheel route to put the Tigers up 23-10.

The Blue Raiders continued to stick around though.

Vattiato found Justin Olson in the 4th quarter on a 13-yard touchdown pass and then they forced a Mizzou safety, making it a 19-23 ball game with just over six minutes left and a chance to take the lead.

The Tigers’ defense stood strong, causing a Middle Tennessee turnover downs and securing the win.

Mizzou will now prepare to face K-State next Saturday at home at 11 a.m.