Barrett, Second-Half Run Lift Lady Tigers to Win
BATON ROUGE -- Three LSU players scored in double-figures led by game-high 19 points from LaSondra Barrett and the LSU women's basketball team rode a 17-0 second-half run to complete a dominating 78-43 win over Ole Miss on Thursday night in the Pete Maravich Assembly Center.
The Lady Tigers (13-7) played their most complete game of the young Southeastern Conference season, improving to 3-3 in the league and starting a four-game homestand on a positive note. LSU returns to action at home against Florida at 2 p.m. CT Sunday in the Maravich Center.
"That was about as good a second half as we could play," said LSU head coach Van Chancellor. "I don't think we could play much better than we played in the second half. I thought it was a complete effort. Our defense tonight was outstanding. We played a great defensive game throughout, (only allowing) 43 points."
LSU improved to 55-5 under Chancellor when holding an opponent to under 50 points. It was the 12th straight victory for the Lady Tigers when surrendering less than 50 points.
Ole Miss (8-9) dropped to 1-4 in SEC play and lost its fourth consecutive game overall. The Rebels, who upset LSU twice last season, never led on Thursday night. It was the largest win for the Lady Tigers over Ole Miss in Baton Rouge in the series history.
Barrett continued her career scoring barrage against Ole Miss with 17 of her 19 points in the second half. The Jackson, Miss., native grabbed seven rebounds and tied a career-high with seven assists.
Adrienne Webb buried 17 points and had three three-pointers. Jeanne Kenney added 15 points and tied her own LSU freshman record for threes in an SEC game with five. Kenney also made five last week at Mississippi State.
"(LaSondra) Barrett was outstanding throughout the game with hustle and rebounding, but I also thought she had a great, great second half," said Chancellor. "I thought Swayze Black played really well. Jeanne Kenney had an unbelievable attitude for a player who had 12 points in the first half. We got on a roll, and I just didn't play her as much as I wanted to, but I thought her attitude was really good. Our team played extremely well tonight."
As a team, LSU finished 10-of-23 from three-point range. It marked the third time this season the Lady Tigers drained 10 threes in a contest. That tally once again registered as the second-most made threes in an SEC game in LSU history. Ole Miss was 3-of-16 from beyond the arc, and the Rebels got to the foul line only one time. LSU committed just four fouls.
Ole Miss stood within two points, 24-22, late in the first half but the Lady Tigers closed nicely with five straight points, including a three-ball from Kenney. The Rebels went the final 4:02 in the first stanza without a bucket as LSU took a 29-22 lead into the locker room.
Barrett ignited the back-breaking 17-0 second-half spurt with a lay-up and a three of her own from the top of the key that gave the Lady Tigers a double-digit margin of 44-33 with 15:36 to play. Latear Eason, playing in her first game since suffering a head injury at South Carolina, then found Webb for another three from the left wing.
LSU's bench, which outscored Ole Miss 31-6, got into the act when Swayze Black put in a lay-up. Barrett tacked on another put-in and after two Webb free throws the damage was done as LSU led 56-33 with 11:21 to go that culminated the run. From the 16:00 mark on, the Lady Tigers outscored Ole Miss 39-10.
Theresa Plaisance gave LSU its 10th three of the night with 3:16 on the clock. She added a lay-up that lifted the Lady Tigers to their largest margin of the evening and the final score.
LSU shot a blistering 66.7 percent in the second half to finish at 48.1 percent for the game. Ole Miss was 20-of-61 from the floor for 32.8 percent. The Lady Tigers out-rebounded the Rebels as well, 43-28.
NOTE: Prior to the game, LSU observed a moment of silence for longtime LSU official scorer/table crew member Doug Reed, who passed away earlier this week after a lengthy illness. Reed was the official scorer for several Lady Tiger greats, including Seimone Augustus and Sylvia Fowles.
LSU HEAD COACH VAN CHANCELLOR
"That was about as good a second half as we could play. I don't think we could play much better than we played in the second half. I thought it was a complete effort. Our defense tonight was outstanding. We played a great defensive game throughout, (only allowing) 43 points. When we had our little run there, I don't think we turned the ball over any; I might be wrong. I thought (LaSondra) Barrett was outstanding throughout the game with hustle and rebounding, but I also thought she had a great, great second half. I thought Swayze Black played really well. I thought Jeanne Kenney had an unbelievable attitude for a player who had 12 points in the first half. We got on a roll, and I just didn't play her as much as I wanted to, but I thought her attitude was really good. Our team played extremely well tonight."
On what he told the team at halftime in terms of defense...
"I can't tell you everything. I just told them that we just wanted to do certain things -- don't give Shae Nelson a three-ball, don't let the point guard dribble drive to the basket and don't let (Kayla) Melson get started. I thought we did a really good job of executing that. We began to rebound better, and our defense in the second half was about as good as I've seen it."
On if he needs LaSondra Barrett to play great offensively in every game...
"We are going to need for her to play like that the whole game, but we have to do a better job of finding her when she's open. In the second half, what we did is we found her when she was open."
LSU PLAYER QUOTES
On her performance in the second half ...
"I think it was decided by the flow of the game. It wasn't like I was going to come out in the second half in play. In the first half, I was just trying to read Ole Miss and just try to let the game come to me. When you have Jeanne Kenney and Adrienne Webb shooting the ball like they were, there was no point for my to try to get out. In the second half, I was more aggressive. Ole Miss did a good job of taking them away, and so it was a reverse effect for me."
The importance of this win ...
"Ole Miss was a difficult matchup for us, but I think with the loss to Auburn we just re-focused ourselves in practice. We owe it all to preparation, and when you prepare like we did this week, this is the result you have. One thing we are looking forward to is not just having one win to carry this over into SEC, and having a good team like Florida coming in here. I think tonight we have got confidence, momentum and swagger back that we had before.
On Ole Miss only taking one free throw ...
"Our game goals have been to defend without fouling. I know for myself that foul trouble is really frustrating, and we just wanted to make tough shots. Coach (Bob) Starkey used the term "wall up," which means keep your hands up and let them make the tough shot. It was a team effort with that."
On the team's defense ...
"We played the best team defense that we've played all year. We helped each other out on the ball screens, and we played really well as a team on defense."
On her shooting performance ...
"The first one is always the hardest. Once the first one goes in, it's automatic. All my shots were off paint touches, and we did a good job reversing the ball and being very patient. I look up at one point, and we had eight seconds left. We were just playing great. They (Ole Miss) did a great job flashing. We hit them, they kicked it out when we double-teamed them, and that's where all my shots came from."
On the types of shots she was looking for ...
"Any shot take it was not necessarily a good decision on my part, but Coach basically told me to let them reverse the ball. Don't take the shot off the first pass, and make them reverse the ball. We did a really good job of just hitting the open player. Adrienne Webb just came back in the second half after having that little off-period in the first half, and she kept shooting. That's the sign of a great shooter.
Ole Miss Head Coach Renee Ladner
On LSU taking control of the game in the second half ...
I thought our effort was very poor in the second half. They just took advantage of all of our weaknesses. They got on the boards and we did not, and that is a nemesis for us. We are struggling with that. They got to the free throw line and we did not. We have to get points from the free throw line. I thought their defense was outstanding tonight. They played a sagging man defense tonight, and we prepared for it all week, but we really let it affect us tonight.
On LSU's defensive effort ...
They did not allow us to get penetration. They have very good help-side defense and it is always one-and-done. In rebounding, they really killed us on the boards and we never really got a second chance opportunity, and if we are going to survive, we must get free throws and we must get second-chance points. To LSU's credit, we knew about that. To our credit, I just think we did not defend very well in the second half. A point of emphasis was not allowing them more than three made 3-point shots, and I see they made 10 3-point shots. We could not find Jeanne Kenney or Adrienne Webb. That is just us not taking a stance in what we need to do in a scouting situation.