Men's Hoops Takes Down McNeese St., 79-52

LSU's Jarell Martin (right)
LSU's Jarell Martin (right)
Chris Kelty
Matt Dunaway
Matt Dunaway

BATON ROUGE – Jarell Martin picked up his first career double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds as the LSU men's basketball team collected its fifth straight victory with a 79-52 decision over McNeese State Saturday at the Maravich Center.

For Martin, the 14 points was his second-highest scoring output whereas the 10 rebounds were a career-high.

With the win, LSU (9-2) has garnered an 18-4 mark in non-conference games under second year coach Johnny Jones. The Tigers had four players score 10-plus points for the third consecutive game.

Shavon Coleman tacked on a season's best 16 points on 5-of-8 shooting from the bench, while Johnny O'Bryant III provided 16 points on 7-of-11 from the floor to go along with five rebounds. Jordan Mickey came away with 11 points aided by a 7-for-7 effort at the foul line. He also secured seven rebounds, three blocks and two assists.

Andre Stringer chipped in seven points and two assists over his 13 minutes of action. The seven points enabled Stringer to move past Bob Meador (1947-51) for 32nd place on LSU's all-time scoring list. Darcy Malone tacked on four points and equaled a career-high with five rebounds.

Anthony Hickey registered three points and two assists. The two assists allowed him to surpass Jones for the No. 11 position on LSU's all-tome assists list.

As a team, LSU was 24-for-62 from the field which included an 8-for-25 mark from three-point range. The Tigers distributed 18 assists on their 24 field goals and were a season's best 23-for-28 at the foul line. Eight players garnered multiple assists for LSU.

McNeese State (2-10) was limited to 14-of-62 shooting and a season-low 22.6 percent clip. It's the second straight game LSU has held an opponent to a season-low field goal percentage The Cowboys also missed 21 of their 24 three-point attempts but were able to hit 21-for-26 from the free throw line. 

Next: vs. Rhode Island (7-6)
Date Sat., Jan. 4, 2014
Time 7 p.m. CT
TV CST | Geaux Zone
Radio 98.1 FM | Affiliates | Listen
Previous Game
Jan. 2, 6 p.m. CT at Brown
Live Stats
Leader Xavier Munford, 6-2 SR Guard
Stats 15.0 ppg., 3.8 rpg.
Last Meeting First Meeting

LSU poured in 28 of the game's 42 points in the paint and held a 28-7 edge in bench points. The Tigers also compiled a 54-39 rebounding advantage.

The two teams traded four lead changes during the opening moments of the first half. The Tigers started slow out of the gate and misfired on 11 of their first 15 field goal attempts as McNeese State secured a 17-16 edge at the 7:13 mark.

LSU ripped off 26 of the stanza's final 34 points to take a 42-25 advantage into the locker room. O'Bryant III found his rhythm with 10 points fueled by four baskets in the paint. 

The Cowboys pulled back to 42-30 in the first three minutes of the second half before LSU notched 13 of the next 18 points over the next 4:55 to extend the lead back to 55-35 with 12:45 remaining.

The Tigers led by as much as 75-41 with 5:57 to go after Coleman canned consecutive triples and a transition layup over a 68-second span.

LSU wraps up non-conference action with its third straight Saturday home game and its third tilt against an Atlantic 10 opponent as Rhode Island visits the Maravich Center. Tip time is on-tap for 7 p.m., and the game will carried by Cox Sports Television along with

The LSU Sports Radio Network will broadcast the game on Eagle 98.1 FM in the Baton Rouge and inside the Geaux Zone at Jim Hawthorne, Ricky Blanton and Kevin Ford will call the action.

For all of the latest news and information on Tiger basketball, visit Fans can also follow the program on its social media outlets at along with @lsubasketball and @lsucoachjones on Twitter.

LSU Head Coach Johnny Jones

Opening Statement…
“We certainly didn’t get off to a great start like we would have liked tonight. I thought the first 10 to 12 minutes of the first half McNeese State did a great job of controlling the tempo of the game. I thought the last eight minutes through pressure we caused some turnovers and forced them to play a little faster because they had to get the ball pass half court. They didn’t have as much time on the shot clock. We sped them up a little bit. I thought we finished the half the right way. You certainly have to credit McNeese (State). It was a great game plan by them. They are a team who has been on the road, playing six or so games on the road. They played some really stiff competition coming into here tonight. They got off to a great start and controlled the tempo. I thought they did an excellent job with that. I thought our guys in the second half again made some plays. We didn’t shoot it at the clip we would have liked, but we were able to hold them around 22 percent from the field. That allowed us to pull away from them. Shavon Coleman, an energy guy, came in the first half. Shavon, Tim (Quarterman) and Malik (Morgan) gave us energy we needed it off the bench. They really sped it up and changed the tempo of the game which allowed us to get a cushion at the half.”

On LSU’s trouble with McNeese State’s zone defense in the first half…
“I didn’t think we were very patient. We didn’t get the ball to the middle of the floor. We were quick shooting it because they did a great job of controlling the tempo and running the shot clock down on the defensive end of the floor. We just tried to take some quick shots and get a quick lead without taking care of the ball. We should have tried to force their defense to shift side-to-side then get the ball to the middle, but we didn’t. What we did was settling early on, and that really played the favor for McNeese (State).”

On McNeese State’s success early on in the game…
“I thought that they did a great job of spreading the floor. We have to really credit them for how they played. They opened the floor up; their guards were quick and tried to get in the gaps. They made some plays early on. They knocked down a three early and got to the rim on another basket. They made several free throws. I thought we got into a foul shooting contest for a little bit. We still have to make sure on the offensive end regardless of what happens on the other end of the floor that we come back and execute at a high level. We have been shooting a high clip, around 46 or 48 (percent) from the field, and I think we shot around 30-something (percent) tonight. That’s just not executing at the level that we should be.”

On Jarell Martin’s performance…
“I thought Jarell did an excellent job. He opened the game up by knocking down a three which we needed, and I thought he competed well. They had a smaller lineup, and I thought that he played well containing their quicker guards and staying in front of them. Then, he made some tough plays inside. I think he only had one offensive rebound, but he wound up getting nine on the defensive end to get to 10 rebounds. It was a good night for him with the number of minutes that he played.”

On Shavon Coleman’s night…
“I think Shavon is off to a great start this year. He’s really that ‘glue guy’ for us. He’s that guy who does a tremendous job of bringing energy whether he starts the game or comes off the bench. Whenever he gets in the game, he really changes the complexity of the game. He did that again tonight by putting pressure on guys and speeding the game up. I thought in the second half he knocked down some big three’s. He works extremely hard, and you just happened to see what happens to folks when hard work pays off.” 

Forward Shavon Coleman

On playing into McNeese State’s style of play in the first half …
“We just had to find our rhythm.  We started a little slow, sluggish, but once we found it, it just started going our way. That’s something we’re proud of.  Once we got it back on our side, everything was all good.”

On keeping the momentum into the second half …
“Once we got the momentum of the game, it was going to stay our way.  Basketball is a game of runs. Once we have the momentum, we have to keep it and run with it.”

On how the team adjusted to McNeese State’s zone defense to start of the game…
“We just had to be patient, find the open spots on the floor and get the ball to the middle.  Once they collapsed in the middle, we’d get it to the outside and then we were able to hit shots or go back down low into Johnny (O’Bryant III) or Jordan (Mickey).  We did a very good job of doing that tonight.”

On the team’s upcoming game versus Rhode Island…
“We have to finish off the non-conference games very strong.  We’ve got to do an excellent job of rebounding, cut down on our turnovers and just play well before we get into conference play.”

On the reserves being able to come in for an extended period of time…
“We love to see Brandon (Eddlestone) and Henry (Shortess) get into the game because they work very hard at practice.  They can hit shots. They play defense so we love getting those guys in the game.”

Forward Jarell Martin

On deciding to use LSU’s size advantage…
“When they were in the zone, we started passing it around to get them tired and try to break them down.  We started throwing it down low to Jordan (Mickey) and Johnny (O’Bryant III) since they were bigger than the other guys.  We just threw it down there so they could put it in.”

On the reserves being able to come in for an extended period of time…
“It’s really nice to know we have guys that can come off the bench and contribute.  They’ll come in and play real hard and do whatever is best for the team.”


McNeese St. Head Coach Dave Simmons

On losing their first half lead …
Johnny Jones does a great job with his basketball team. I decided to take Desharick Guidry out with about five minutes left in the first half. After that, we were not able to maintain. Before you knew it, we were down 17 at the half. That was a big difference. Anytime you fight on the road against a good team like this, you have to be prepared for a battle. For the most part, the best thing about it is that it is our last game for 2013, and our next basketball game is at home. We have done some good things. We came in and shot 22 percent tonight. If we could come in and shoot 40 percent, we could play with anyone that has been on our schedule. Until we shoot it better, we will have to keep working to get in a better position. For the most part, we did a good job defensively. LSU did start to get going. Shavon Coleman came off and started scoring. Coleman seems like he loves playing against McNeese, he had a great game against us last year. They hit shots, and we were not making shots.”

On improving the team’s shooting percentage…
“That is exactly the thing. We have to get it figured out. We have a few days to build our confidence. Also, LSU’s size and shot blocking abilities affects our shooting percentage. We are getting some good looks, we just need to get those shots in when we get them.”

On his team’s performance…
“I thought when they were making their run, there was a lot of defensive pressure. We turned the ball over a couple of times. When you get some easy baskets, your confidence level goes up. For the most part of the game, I thought we battled hard and made some good plays. This team does not quit. I think once we get into our league, we will do much better. The biggest thing is playing at home makes a difference. You can tell by looking at teams that have a lot of home games, they often have higher winning percentages.”

On the team’s press abilities and winning games…
“We did press well until we got tired and had some mental lapses in the press. Even our defense got tired. You can see where there is experience and a lack of experience. I think we will be okay, but we have to have some guys step up. We have to have some people on the bench ready. I look at it, and I really see them coming around and doing some good things. We have some good things in our post. We just have to get our guys shooting a lot better. They are disappointed and not necessarily satisfied in themselves. We just have to keep them positive and keep them working hard. It is going to happen, but you have to keep pressing on. We are all glad that this nine-game road stretch is over with. It is what it is. We have battled, and we have been tested. Hopefully, we will start winning more of our last games. Winning games makes you better and helps the mental aspect of the game. We need to win. We have two home games. We have been on the road long enough, and it is time for us to come home.”




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