BATON ROUGE — There would be no close call this time.
The LSU Tigers had begun play in the Southeastern Conference by winning its first six games by winning close games. There were the two-point wins against Arkansas and Florida and a one-point over Mississippi State. The Tigers didn’t need any late-game heroics to push their SEC record to a 7-0.
With a pair of double-double performances, and sound three-point shooting defense, LSU easily defeated Alabama 90-76 on Wednesday night.
In addition to winning their seventh straight SEC game, the Tigers have now won nine in a row.
How It Happened:
LSU’s Javonte Smart started things off with a layup which was then answered with a three-pointer by Alabama’s Jaden Shackeford. The Tigers would get the first three-pointer of the game moments later when Darius Days drained his shot to give LSU the lead. The Crimson Tide answered immediately with a jumper by Galin Smith.
The Tigers then went on a run and after Emmitt Williams’ dunk, LSU held a 14-7 lead with 15:24 left in the first half.
Alabama quickly cut that lead with back-to-back three-pointers by Alex Reese and Shackelford.
The two teams would continue to go back-and-forth for most of the first half before LSU built up a double-digit lead.
A jumper by Smart would spark a 16-2 run for the Tigers which was capped with a Williams fist dunking the ball, and then making a shot under the basket while being fouled. Williams missed the free throw but with 5:32 left in the first half, LSU held a comfortable 43-25 lead over Alabama.
The Crimson Tide played better in final minutes of the half but the Tigers still held a 51-33 lead at the break.
Alabama chipped away at that lead to start the second half outscoring LSU 13-7 as Shackelford hit two more three-pointers. With 15:16 left in the second half, the Tigers held a 58-46 lead.
After a Jaylen Forbes three-pointer, Alabama cut the lead to 62-53 but LSU responded in a big way.
Aundre Hyatt stole the ball at mid court which set up a Skylar Mays layup. Trendon Watford then stole the ball away from Kira Lewis Jr. Mays missed the layup this time but Hyatt grabbed the rebound and then slammed it down. A few moments later, Marlon Taylor’s layup made it 68-53.
Even though Alabama had moments down the stretch, LSU never relinquished control of the game and picked up its seventh win of conference play.
Big Number: 26.3
Alabama entered the game as one of the best three-point shooting teams in the SEC. The Crimson Tide were shooting 35.8 percent from three-point range with guard John Petty Jr. leading the team with an impressive 47.8 percent from beyond the arc. LSU though shut down Alabama’s three-point shooting hold them to a mere 26.3 percent. Petty meanwhile didn’t make a single three-pointer as he went 0-for-3 from beyond the arc.
Players of the Game: Emmitt Williams & Trendon Watford
The LSU front court duo both recorded a double-double in Wednesday night’s victory. Williams led all scorers with 23 points and added 11 rebounds as he recorded his fifth double-double of the season. Watford meanwhile had 17 points and a game-high, and season-high, 15 rebounds.
Next Up: LSU will host Ole Miss on Saturday inside the Pete Maravich Assembly Center. Tip is scheduled for 11 a.m.