Nothing’s ever really guaranteed for LSU basketball. After being up 45-39 at the break, the Tigers got sluggish down the stretch but were able to come away with a 79-74 win over the Yale Bulldogs.
How It Happened:
LSU fired out of the gates with an 11-2 run highlighted by an early three-pointer by Tremont Waters. The Bulldogs were able to get it within two points off of a fastbreak layup by Alex Copeland. The Tigers finished strong though to end the first half with an 11-4 run to head into the locker room with a 16-point lead.
The Tigers kept the game in front of them for much of the first half, but with 10:11 left in regulation, Yale managed to make it a seven-point ballgame. From that point on, it became a lot more nerve-wracking after everything that happened last week against Florida. The Bulldogs were able to stay in it late with some solid three-point shooting to respond to LSU’s inside attack, but it wasn’t enough thanks to Skylar Mays getting to the free throw line twice in the final 15 seconds of regulation, winning their first game in the NCAA Tournament since the 2009 season.
Big Number: 40
The Tigers were impressive in the paint on Thursday with 40 of their points coming from in the paint. That more than made up for a less than stellar showing from beyond the arc.
Player of the Game: Kavell Bigby-Williams
While Williams wasn’t as efficient in terms of an offensive output when compared to Skylar Mays and Tremont Waters, he was an absolute menace defensively with four of LSU’s blocks. He was on another level on Thursday and really helped the Tigers extend their stay in Jacksonville.
Next Up: Saturday vs Maryland; Tipoff at 11:10 am