Da Boot Sports
By: David Penn
BATON ROUGE, LA - In No. 3 LSU’s first SEC rematch of the season, the Arkansas Razorbacks played an impeccable second half that erased a 14 point LSU lead and set up a dramatic sequence for the Tigers, now 19-0, 7-0 to preserve perfection with a 79-76 victory.
Arkansas (17-4, 4-2) would tie the game with 6:45 to play in the fourth period and take their first lead of the game with 6:23 to play.
Angel Reese was not only leading the Tigers in scoring and rebounds, she was leading with words
and actions, encouraging her teammates down the stretch to make big plays in the waning moments of the game, and her teammates obliged.
Alexis Morris bolted down court and knifed through the defense to score a layup with 2:09 to play that would give LSU a 75-74 edge after Reese told Morris, “Big players make big plays.” Freshman Flau’Jae Johnson would ice the game with four clutch free throws down the stretch.
LSU led by as many as 14 points in the first half and took an 8 point advantage into halftime. In the second half Arkansas would roar back and test LSU on every possession. LSU bent but never broke. Arkansas chipped away at the LSU lead until finally leading for the first time in the contest just before the midway point of the fourth period.
The two teams would then trade shots down the stretch until a costly shot clock violation gave possession back to LSU and swung the momentum back into LSU’s favor.
Reese recorded her 19th double double and tied the record for consecutive double doubles, a record held by Tiger legend Sylvia Fowles. Reese poured in 19 points and grabbed 19 rebounds, Reese is averaging 24 points and 15 rebounds a game for LSU, no other SEC player has had one 20 point 15 rebound game.
Johnson finished the game with 19 points and 6 rebounds, but no points were bigger for Johnson than the only four free throws she took. With just seconds left on the clock and LSU clinging to one point leads, she drained all four attempts from the charity stripe.
LaDahzia Williams and Jasmine Carson both scored in double figures for the Tigers with Williams dropping in 11 while grabbing 12 boards and Carson scoring 10 and leading the team in assists with four.
Erynn Barnum led the Razorbacks with 20 points, 7 rebounds, and 4 assists. Samara Spencer
scored 13, Chrissy Carr scored 12, Makayla Daniels and Maryam Dauda each scored 11. The Razorbacks went 10-29 from beyond the arc, while LSU was just 4-10. The loss snaps Arkansas’ four game winning streak.
Next up for LSU will be a road contest in Tuscaloosa on Monday January 23rd vs the Alabama Crimson Tide (15-4, 4-2). The Tide have won their last three games.