Lady Tigers to Face Host FIU in Classic Final
MIAMI - The LSU women's basketball team, riding the momentum of its upset victory over No. 12 West Virginia, meets Florida International in the championship game of the FIU Thanksgiving Classic at approximately 2 p.m. CT Sunday in U.S. Century Bank Arena.
The contest will be carried on the LSU Sports Radio Network on 107.3 FM in Baton Rouge and to members of the Geaux Zone at LSUsports.net/live. The LSU Sports Radio Network tipoff show starts at 1:45 p.m. CT. In-game updates are available via Twitter at www.Twitter.com/LSUwbkb.
Live streaming video is available free through FIU's Athletics website, www.FIUsports.com. owa and West Virginia face off in the consolation game at noon CT.
The Lady Tigers (2-2) out-muscled the Mountaineers in a physical game Friday night by a score of 71-63. LSU used its usual recipe of success, getting to the free throw line (22-of-30) and forcing turnovers - 28 which led to 16 points.
"This team has shown that there is no quit in them and they have toughness," said LSU head coach Nikki Caldwell. "Florida International has a lot of great players who can score from the perimeter. We are going to have to be on top of our closeouts both on the ball and away from the ball. I thought FIU did a great job on the boards against Iowa. We have to be able to counter that aggressiveness."
Freshman Danielle Ballard was a game-changer on both ends of the floor on Friday, scoring a career-high 25 points and grabbing career-bests in rebounds (8) and steals (5). Ballard is one of four Lady Tigers averaging double-figures in points. She is posting 12.5 points per game and she ranks second in the Southeastern Conference in steals with 14.
Junior forward Theresa Plaisance continues to lead LSU in scoring (14.8 ppg) and rebounding (9.8 rpg). Plaisance is third in the SEC in rebounding and she is tops in the league in offensive boards with 6.0 per contest.
The Panthers (2-2) shocked Iowa in the waning seconds on Friday with an acrobatic buzzer-beater shot from Jerica Coley. Coley is the Sun Belt preseason Player of the Year and she is averaging 17.8 points and 8.3 rebounds.
LSU stands one victory away from becoming the fourth SEC school to claim 800 all-time wins. In the 38-year history of the program, the Lady Tigers are 799-371 (.684) all-time and would join Tennessee (1,194), Georgia (838) and Auburn (814) in the 800-win club.
LSU is 3-1 all-time against FIU. The two teams are meeting for the first time since a 68-54 LSU win in this tournament on Nov. 30, 2003. All four previous meetings have occurred in Miami.