Tigers Complete Huge Comeback, Defeat No. 15 Michigan State, 58-56

Geaux Nation

BIMINI, BAHAMAS – The LSU women’s basketball team used a strong defensive effort and a 15-0 run in the second half to defeat No. 15 Michigan State, 58-56, after trailing by as many as 14 points. With the win, LSU improves to 6-1 and the Spartans fall to 5-1.

The Lady Tigers will face Memphis for the Bimini Division championship at the Junknoo Jam at 5:45 p.m. CT on Saturday, November 30.

Junior Khayla Pointer and freshman Tiara Young both scored in double digits for LSU. Pointer finished with 13 points, four rebounds, and three assists. Young scored 10 points and notched two rebounds.

How It Happened

·         The game remained scoreless until the 7:02 mark when the Spartans got on the board first.

·         The Tigers got on the board at the 6:37 mark off a layup by Khayla Pointer.

·         The Tigers cut the lead to 5-4 before the Spartans went on a 5-0 run to take a 10-4 lead into the first media timeout.

·         A steal by Karli Seay, an assist by Mercedes Brooks, and a layup by Jailin Cherry cut the Spartan lead to 12-10. Michigan State extended it back to a four-point lead before LSU called a timeout with 1:54 remaining in the first quarter.

·         After a Tiara Young layup to tie the game at 14, the Spartans scored with six seconds left to lead 16-14 after one.

·         LSU took their first lead of the game, 18-16, at the 8:47 mark in the second quarter off a Jailin Cherry jump shot.

·         After LSU’s lead, the Spartans caught the hot hand, scoring the next five points, to ultimately lead 25-23 at the second quarter media timeout.

·         LSU regained the lead 29-27 in the second, before Michigan State closed the half on a 12-3 run, to lead 39-32 at the half.

·         Pointer led the Tigers with nine points in the first half. She also notched two rebounds and two assists.

·         The Spartans came out of the break clicking on all cylinders with a 7-0 run to extend their lead to 46-32 before Ayana Mitchell put the Tigers on the board in the half.

·         The Spartans held their biggest lead of the game, 48-34, at the third quarter media timeout.

·         The Tigers came out of the media timeout and scored the games next six points to cut the Spartan lead to 48-40, leading to a Michigan State timeout.

·         The Tigers closed the third quarter on a 11-0 run, behind electrifying defense, to trail the Spartans by only three points going into the fourth.

·         The Tigers took their first lead, 49-48, since the second quarter after Mitchell grabbed an offensive board and hit a contested layup.

·         After Young and Faustine Aifuwa hit back-to-back layups, the Tigers took a 53-50 lead into the fourth quarter media timeout.

·         After Michigan State hit a three to cut the Tiger lead to 58-55, State forced a turnover and called a timeout with six seconds left.

·         As the clock ticked down, Taryn McCutcheon was fouled on a three-point attempt. After hitting the first, she missed the second leading to an intentional miss on the third free throw. A Spartan foul gave the Tigers the ball with .07 second left.

·         LSU outscored the Spartans 26-17 in the second half and shot 5-11 from the free throw line in the fourth to ice their sixth win on the season. 

Head Coach Nikki Fargas

On how they were able to slow down Michigan State’s offense…

“We were able to have Ayana Mitchell in the second half. She’s our best defender and rebounder. Then we were able to get some production from our bench. I loved the fact that we were pressing and forcing turnovers. This was a hard fought win against a very good Michigan State team.”

On having Mitchell’s presence on the court in the second half…

“She exemplifies toughness. She’s a great leader for this team and one of the best players that I have coached. She does so many different things. All those charges she took were just energy plays for our team. She is a special young lady.”

On looking forward to Memphis…

“They’re quick and athletic. Their guards can take you off the bounce so we’re going to have to be conditioned to stay down and not allow their dribble penetration.”

(Press Release Provided by LSU Athletics)

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