Tigers fall to Gators, 83-79
By: Mike Lanclos
Da Boot Sports!
GAINESVILLE, FL: The LSU Tigers dropped their first road game in the SEC to a good Florida Gator Basketball team by a score of 83-79. With the loss, LSU now sits at 6-2, 1-1 in SEC play. The Gators improve to 2-0 in Conference action and 5-1 overall.
At the start of the game, LSU looked like they were well on their way to bring home a win, but Florida would continue to push the Tigers to their limit and played inspiringly towards the end to gut out the victory.
To get the game started LSU would jump out to a quick early 5-0 lead as Javonte Smart would get a layup and a free throw to get the Tigers on the board, followed by a jumper by Cam Thomas. Florida would eventually tie the game up after Colin Castleton would get a layup of his own to even things up two minutes into the game.
LSU would create some breathing room again as they would go on a 7-2 run over the next two minutes to build a 12-7 advantage.
Florida would get things started again going on a 6-0 run ending with Anthony Duruji sinking a
jump shot to give the Gators the lead 13-12. with 16:22 left on the clock.
LSU would then put the pressure on Florida as they would get a lead themselves by going up 18-13 after Trendon Watford and Javonte Smart would each hit three point buckets.
The Gators would bounce back in a close back and forth contest as they would regain the lead after Scottie Lewis would dunk the ball on a alleyoop to give his team a 19-18 advantage.
Cameron Thomas would hit 3 free throw shots along with a three pointer for LSU to even the game at 26 a piece with 8:54 left. For the next 7 minutes, the game would remain close with the Tigers maintaining a small lead until Florida would tie things up again with 1:28 left, 35-35..
Right before the half would end, Florida would nail a three point bucket just in time to beat the buzzer to make the game tied at 40 a piece.
The second half would continue to go back and forth, however the Gators would take a 48-45 lead at the 16:11 mark and never looked back. start to get away from them. Florida would build their lead as LSU would have trouble slowing down Colin Castleton, who eventually helped give the Gators a 10 point lead at the 12:00 mark.
The Tigers would fight to stay close, but it was simply Florida's contest to win as the ball would seem to bounce their way all second half long. Late in the game LSU would find themselves in foul trouble, But would still not go away quietly as they would cut the Gators lead to 3 points with 19 seconds left in the game. Then battle to get to within 81-79 with six ticks left on the clock, but Florida would hit their free throws to seal the win.
Cameron Thomas led the Tigers with 28 points while Trendon Watford contributed 21 points and Javonte smart help with 20 points. LSU finished 25-61 from the floor for 41%. From three point land, they would go 7-18 on the day.
For the Gators, Colin Castleton led his team with 21 points. Tre Mann had 19 points. Scottie Lewis would add 17 points along with Anthony Duruji throwing in 16 points. The Gators would get 34 points in the paint and 5 three point shots to go down.
LSU coach will Wade summed up the game best as he would comment, "We tried a bunch of different defenses but we just ran out of bodies," Wade said. "We missed a lot of stuff at the rim and that's a credit to their length and athleticism and it was just tough sledding for us to finish."
The Tigers will look to rebound as they return to the Pete Maravich Assembly Center to play the Georgia Bulldogs on Wednesday January 6. Tip Off is set for 6 pm.
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