Basketball Wins Triple-OT Thriller Over Alabama

LSU's Charles Carmouche played 54 minutes and scored 20 points
LSU's Charles Carmouche played 54 minutes and scored 20 points
Steve Franz
Kent Lowe (@LSUkent)
Kent Lowe (@LSUkent)
Communications Sr. Associate

BATON ROUGE - On a day when an LSU team in 1978 that had to fight through overtime to defeat No. 1 Kentucky was being honored on the 35th anniversary of the occasion, the 2013 LSU Tigers found a way to rally from 10 down in the final 3:37 of regulation to force overtime and then outlast the Alabama Crimson Tide in triple overtime, 97-94, Saturday afternoon at the Pete Maravich Assembly Center.

LSU (16-9, 7-7 SEC) took a four-point lead in the final 1:21 of the third overtime when guard Anthony Hickey hit his only three pointer of the contest, and the Tigers held off Trevor Releford and the Crimson Tide for the thrilling win.

In 51 minutes of action, Johnny O'Bryant III led the Tigers with 24 points, as the forward added 10 rebounds and three assists. For O'Bryant III, it was his league-leading 12th double double of the season. Hickey, who was 6-of-13 shooting, added 13 points, seven assists and five steals, the latter figure helping him hold the nation's lead in steals average.

LSU's Overtime History

Charles Carmouche poured in 20 points including 4-of-7 from three point range. He played 54 minutes for the Tigers before fouling out with five seconds to play in the final extra period. Shavon Coleman added 17 points and eight rebounds, while Andre Stringer scored 10 points with four assists.

Releford was nearly unstoppable for Alabama (18-9, 10-4 SEC), scoring 36 points on 14-of-18 shooting. He made all four of his three-point attempts and 4-of-5 free throws in 50 minutes.

A Levi Randolph layup put Alabama up 10 points for the third time in the season half, 69-59, but that would be the final points the Crimson Tide would score in regulation. 

Charles Carmouche made two free throws with 2:52 to play to make it 69-61 and then after two missed shots by Alabama, Shavon Coleman was fouled and made two free throws to make it 69-63 with 2:14 to play.

Hickey made a steal on the Tide's next possession and after an LSU timeout, Johnny O'Bryant III got a layup to cut it to 69-65, with 2 minutes to play. O'Bryant III also had a free throw, but missed it and Coleman got the rebound and Carmouche would hit the layup to put LSU within two with 1:51 to play. It would be O'Bryant III who would tie it up making two free throws with 54 seconds.

Alabama would turn it over on their final possession and O'Bryant III missed a shot at the buzzer sending the game into overtime.

The game appeared to end in Alabama's favor in an evenly played first five minutes as after an LSU turnover with 35 seconds left in a tie 76-76 game, Releford missed a jumper, but Rodney Cooper was on the other side of the goal and put the ball back in as the horn sounded. One referee signaled the bucket was good, but after an official's review, the tip was ruled to have occurred after the buzzer sounded and the red light appeared on the basket, forcing double overtime.

In the second overtime, LSU scored the first five points on a layup by O'Bryant III and a three-pointer by Stringer to go up 81-76, 90 seconds in, but Alabama eventually tied the game, 83-83. LSU would again go up by three, 88-85, the final points coming on two free throws by O'Bryant III with 25 seconds left. Bama would tie the contest with 16 ticks left in double overtime on a three-pointer by Cooper, the ninth tie of the game.

LSU would come down and get two shots at it with Malik Morgan missing a three and Hickey getting the rebound and getting off a wild three at the buzzer that hit the rim, sending the teams and the raucous crowd at the Maravich Center to triple overtime tied at 88-88 for the first time in the long history of the building for a men's basketball game.

Ironically, LSU's last triple overtime game came in 1999 when Alabama beat LSU, 72-71, in Tuscaloosa.

In the third overtime, it was Alabama who took the lead first, 90-88, on a layup by Nick Jacobs. Stringer would make one of two free throws to cut it to 90-89 and after a missed Alabama jumper, O'Bryant III would score on the other end to five LSU the lead for good, 91-90, with 2:18 to play on the 16th lead change of the game.

Alabama would miss again and Hickey would hit a three to put LSU up, 94-90, and the Tigers would never be up less than two the rest of the way.

LSU shot 47.1 percent (32-68) for the game, while Alabama was almost as good, hitting 46.1 percent.   LSU would outrebound the Tide, 47-38.

The overtime game made LSU 35-48 all-time in overtime games and 22-19 in overtime games in Baton Rouge.

Also in double figures for the Crimson Tide were Cooper with 18, Lacey with 11 and Jacobs with 10.

LSU's O'Bryant III (51) and Carmouche (54) are the first LSU players to register 50 minutes in an LSU game since Maurice Carter did it in the triple overtime in 1999 at Alabama.

The Tigers play Arkansas in the next-to-last home game of the season on Wednesday night at 7 p.m. in a game to be carried on the SEC Network and the LSU Sports Radio Network. Tickets are available at

Follow LSU men's basketball on Facebook and on Twitter @LSUBasketball.

LSU vs. Alabama
February 23, 2013


Opening statement ...
"First of all, what a great college basketball game. I thought it was an extremely tough, hard-fought battle out there. I thought both teams did a great job in terms of continuing to fight and playing extremely well. We're very fortunate to come out on top and extremely proud of our kids with the effort that they gave. I want to thank our fans for really coming out and the energy that they were able to give us there in regulation to fight back and put ourselves in position to really get the game there in overtime. I thought it was a great atmosphere for us today. It was a great college basketball game. I'm really proud of our kids, the effort, the confidence and everything that they played with today."

On the play in the last minutes of regulation ...
"Well, I thought we had plenty of time and timeouts to work with as well, and it was going to be our last effort to try and get it done. We needed to try and make sure that we were defensively sound, got stops on the other end of the floor, made tough plays and finished with rebounds. On the other end of the floor we didn't have to settle for three pointers. We had to try and get quick scores, be in it at the basket, get in gaps and make plays, get timeouts and utilize those so we could extend the game. I thought we were able to do that. Guys made huge plays. You have to give them credit for making some huge shots on the offensive end of the floor and really bowing their neck down there on the defensive end in getting plays and getting tough rebounds there late."

On Charles Carmouche switching to guard Alabama's Trevor Releford ...
"I thought he did an excellent job. We probably should have put him on him earlier. We did switch up our defensive look after Mouche (Charles Carmouche) started guarding him. We tried to force the ball and press it out of his hand in running a double at him at times, especially off of the high-ball screen. I thought our guys on the backside of it did a great job of matching up, or zoning up behind it, making plays out of it. I thought Carmouche did an excellent job in making sure that he stayed connected to him and not allowing him to get into driving lanes."

On sitting Anthony Hickey for a time in the second half ...
"Well, I thought he probably wasn't as aggressive as he normally plays in the game. I thought he was a little hesitant early on. When we subbed him out I wanted to give him a rest, but I thought Corban (Collins) came in and did a pretty good job of defending. He's got good size and strength on him, and he played well and made some key plays. We were able to get the ball into Johnny. About the time I put (Hickey) back in he did what he's done for us all year long. We wanted to give him another opportunity and put him out there. I thought he did an excellent job of coming in right away and making a big play right there underneath the basket, getting the ball and giving us a timeout right there on the baseline. So, an excellent job by him coming back in and making some plays late for us."

On the last play of regulation ...
"Yeah, we were looking for some driving lanes off of a screen. It was a play we had run a little bit earlier prior to that play. They did a great job of running underneath it and forced us over the top. Johnny, again, had an opportunity to roll back towards the basket. He did a great job of spotting up. He had a great look at it, and Johnny's a high percentage shooter. I thought that one was going down for us. It wasn't a three out there, but he got a good look. I thought it was going to go down. Anytime you get into that position you just have to make plays and make sure that you execute it. So, Johnny was the guy available because of how the defense shifted after the drive."

On the timeout called in between Johnny O'Bryant's free throws with seven seconds left in the third overtime ...
"We wanted to make sure that we had a great understanding of what we were going to do if we were three up or if we were four up and the decisions that we were going to make. If it's a four-point game we want to play the game out, force them to try to make a play and let the time run. If it were a three-point ball game we wanted them to get the ball across half court, then we would foul them because then they would have a short clock to work with. They would have to get to the free-throw line. That's not an opportunity for them to tie the game with one shot. So, that's what we wanted to do. Unfortunately, a foul was called on (Charles) Carmouche when the ball came across, which killed the clock for us, but that wasn't our intent."

On Johnny O'Bryant having success against the double teams ...
"Growth and maturity, and I think that's what Johnny (O'Bryant) has been able to do. He didn't force the action. I thought he did an excellent job of allowing us to play off of him, and I thought guys had easy-scoring opportunities because of that. He made the right feeds, the right reads after he was catching the ball and didn't force the action. He still came up with a huge night only getting 15 shots. As much as we look for him, and playing 51 minutes, I think it says a lot about what he was trying to do and not forcing the action. He had four turnovers, but as much as he's handling the ball in that type of traffic, that's not a bad number in 51 minutes."

On whether he's been in a game like this before ...
"I can't recall. I've been in some overtime games before. I'm not sure in terms of triple overtimes, possibly at my last stop. I can't answer that right off. I think it may have been a double overtime versus Loyola Marymount. I've had my share of those, but not three."

On whether Anthony Hickey was being benched to have a message sent ...
"Absolutely not. I thought it was just a decision I had to make because I thought he was a little hesitant. He plays so hard and I just wasn't sure what was going on with him because the aggressiveness wasn't there at times and he was a little hesitant on some of the decisions he was making. So, I had to get him out and maybe allow him to look at the game a little bit. He hadn't done anything wrong. He's done a tremendous job and played extremely hard, but I was trying to help him out. He had an opportunity to sit there, watch for a little bit and see where he could impact the game and help his team. It registered, and he came out and played well."


F Johnny O'Bryant III

On his slow start and his strong finish...
"Alabama did a great job at sending a double team. I started waiting on the double team instead of just going right away. In the second half, I just got more aggressive. I think I split it one time and I started making the right passes, so I just wanted to be more aggressive."

On the play call at the end of regulation...
"It was a screen for Charles [Carmouche]. They went and trapped him so he just swung it back to me. I shot and missed."

On getting the win...
"It was definitely a great win. We still had a sour taste in our mouths from what happened down in Alabama. It was definitely a hard-fought game and we ended up pulling it out."

G Charles Carmouche

On coming from behind to win the game...
"We just kept fighting. We knew we should have won back in Alabama earlier in the season and we pretty much owed [the fans] this one - for our loss and our football team. It's a rivalry. We just wanted to come out and give our fans something to cheer about."

On getting the start today after sitting out the last game...
"I won't say it gave me extra motivation. But I felt like I could have helped my team back at Tennessee. Just sitting there watching the team struggle and knowing I could have helped and probably won the game was tough. So I pretty much owed this one to my team so I was going to come out today and give it all I had on both sides of the ball."

On defending Alabama's Trevor Releford...
"He was having a pretty good game and Coach [Jones] was looking for somebody to stop him. Andre [Stringer] kind of told Coach that he wanted the assignment. I guess Coach really saw it in my eyes, I didn't say anything - I just wanted to guard him and lock him down. He's a great player and he's a tough guy to guard, but we needed those stops and I just kept fighting and tried to be everywhere that he was and not let him see another pass; I just pretty much denied him the whole way."

G Anthony Hickey

On coming from behind to win the game...
"We just went out there and wanted to win. It was tough but we had everybody grind it out and get that win."

On sitting out a large portion of the game...
"I was just staying engaged over there. Coach [Johnny Jones] made the decision to sit me out for a little bit and let me catch my breath. I was just watching them and cheering them on and waiting for my time to be called. I just kept pushing them while I'm on the sideline. You've got to have faith in your team."

G Andre Stringer

On coming from behind to win the game...
"We wanted to come out and make a statement. Obviously we remember what they did to us earlier in a game at their place. We ended up losing by three. We have that football rivalry. Alabama is a big team in our league, so we wanted to make a statement today."

On his slow start and his late-game shooting surge...
"I've got a team full of guys that make the right plays and make the right passes. I tried to take the shots that showed up to me early on. I didn't see any areas where I had good looks, so I didn't want to force it. I got some good looks late in the game and I was able to knock them down. Based off of [Anthony] Hickey's penetration, ball movement and trapping Johnny [O'Bryant III], I guess they forgot about me because I wasn't shooting that much so I was able to get free on a couple of them."


Opening Statement...
"I thought the game was decided on two areas, rebounding and the free throw line. LSU made the plays they had to make when there were three minutes to play and we had a 10-point lead.  We have to rebound the ball and do what got us the lead. Unfortunately that three-minute span was the difference. When you look at the free-throw numbers that tells the story as well. I thought our guys fought and our mindset, coming into the game, was that we would be going into a difficult environment and I thought we fought really hard. That three-minute span was difficult, but in the overtimes I was proud of the way we were able to make plays and how we did the things we needed to do to have a chance. Ultimately, rebounding and the breakdowns cost us today.

On having foul trouble...
"You look at the differential in free-throw line, it's a physical game. I hear everyone asking questions about the physicality of the game in our league or college basketball and it was on display today. We had guys who fouled out and obviously it affects you when you lose guys and have to sit them for fouls but it's a physical game.

On coming back after the loss...
"We are back and they are fine. This is a tough loss and we will be ready to go back on Tuesday."

On the lack of rebounding...
"LSU had a free-throw block out when we were up 10 that we need to come up with that. From that point on, it seemed like every missed shot, they'd get it back. I've got to look back at the film. My expectation is that we get the balls that they came up with. It's a physical game and when you are allowed to be physical than you have to give it back."


On his career-high performance against LSU...
"It would have probably been better if we would have won."

On LSU's effective defense during the second half...
"I don't think they were doing anything different from what they were doing the whole game. But I had other people on the team to step up and make plays like Rodney (Cooper), Andrew (Steele), and Lacey (Trevor). They stepped up and made plays."

On the frustration of losing in triple overtime...
"It is frustrating right now, but you can't dwell on it too much.  You still have a lot to play for. We just have to move on to the next game."

On what the difference of the game was...
"Like Coach (Anthony Grant) said, rebounding, loose balls, and plays like that."

On having a tougher loss than today's against LSU...
"We have had some tough losses, but there's no point to keep talking about losses."

On setting the Alabama's record for steals...
"It is a good accomplishment, but I still give some of the credit to my team for having my back and letting me make plays."




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