Lady Tigers Open Six-Game Homestand on Sunday
BATON ROUGE -- Two of the elite conferences in the nation will meet at 2 p.m. CT Sunday as an Atlantic Coast Conference team visits the Maravich Center for the first time since 2008 when the LSU women's basketball team begins a six-game non-conference homestand against NC State.
The contest will be carried live on CST (Cox Sports Television) with Lyn Rollins and Victor Howell handling the call. Patrick Wright and Jeff Palermo call the action on the LSU Sports Radio Network on 107.3 FM in Baton Rouge and to members of the Geaux Zone on www.LSUsports.net/live. Live streaming HD video is also available to Geaux Zone members. In-game updates are available via Twitter at www.Twitter.com/LSUwbkb.
Tickets for Sunday's game are available for a special two for $8 price in celebration of the Lady Tigers' 800th victory last Sunday. The two for $8 tickets are available in the 200 and 300 levels of the Maravich Center and can be purchased online at www.LSUtix.net. On gameday, tickets are available on the upper ramps of the PMAC beginning at 1 p.m.
Sunday will be "Dads and Daughters" day in the Maravich Center. All dads and daughters can take a photo together from 1-1:45 p.m. in front of an LSU backdrop on the upper concourse between portals X and W. Following the game, freshman Derreyal Youngblood and her father will speak to the group in the courtside club. In addition, fans will receive free a custom deck of LSU playing cards upon entrance into Sunday's game.
LSU (3-2) returns to the hardwood for the first time since winning the FIU Thanksgiving Classic in Miami, Fla., last weekend. The 76-69 win over FIU in last Sunday's championship elevated the Lady Tigers to the 800 all-time win club, becoming the fourth team in Southeastern Conference history to reach the milestone.
LSU head coach Nikki Caldwell will address fans prior to tipoff about the significance of 800 victories in the program's 38-year history. Caldwell urges all fans, former players, coaches, managers and support staff to come out and celebrate the milestone.
"Anyone who has had some type of impact on those 800 wins, we would love to see you in the PMAC on Sunday," said Caldwell. "We are going to acknowledge everyone prior to tipoff and let them know that everything they have done to help put this program in this position is appreciated. I know Coach (Sue) Gunter would be smiling down on this accomplishment."
LSU is back in the comforts of the Maravich Center for the first time since the Wichita State season-opener on Nov. 11. NC State (5-2) is the first ACC school to come to Baton Rouge since Florida State in 2008. The Wolfpack are facing its third SEC team of the year after previously defeating Auburn, 85-71, and losing to Florida, 66-64, in Las Vegas.
NC State is coached by Kellie Harper, a former Tennessee All-American. Caldwell and Harper are very familiar with each other. Caldwell served as a graduate assistant on the 1998-99 Lady Vol team during Harper's senior year. Caldwell defeated Harper in the first round of the 2010 NCAA Tournament while serving as head coach at UCLA.
"Having seen her teams before and played them, they are very aggressive on the defensive end and play very hard," said Caldwell. "She's the kind of coach that can motivate a team to reel off points in a hurry. They have a balanced attack. Defensively, we have to be ready to not only defend their inside game, but also the three ball. They have some very outstanding guards."
Junior forward Kody Burke leads the ACC in double-doubles with three. She is averaging a team-best 16.6 points and 8.8 rebounds.
LSU features four double-figure scorers led by junior forward Theresa Plaisance, who was named most valuable player of the FIU Classic. Plaisance is posting 15.8 points and 9.0 boards, both of which rank fourth in the SEC. Plaisance tied a career high with 20 points while blocking the fourth-most shots in school history - seven - at FIU last Sunday.
Freshman guard Danielle Ballard continues to shine with her playmaking abilities off the dribble. Ballard is the SEC Freshman of the Week after averaging 19.0 points in two games in Miami. Ballard ranks second among all freshmen in the league in scoring with 12.6 points per game.
Senior guard Adrienne Webb has scored in double-figures in three consecutive games. Webb is second on the team in scoring with 15.2 points per contest, and she is second in the SEC in three-point shooting percentage having connected for 10-of-24 for 41.7 percent. Junior guard Jeanne Kenney is tops on the squad in assists with 22.
LSU and NC State are meeting for the first time in women's basketball. The Lady Tigers are 18-11 all-time against current members of the ACC, including a 7-1 mark at home. LSU has won 13 straight December games dating back to Dec. 22, 2009.