Basketball Tigers Return Sunday at 1 p.m. vs. UIW
Communications Sr. Associate
BATON ROUGE – The LSU Tigers get a chance to extend a long home winning streak Sunday when the Tigers host the University of incarnate Word Sunday at 1 p.m. at the Pete Maravich Assembly Center.
Fans can attend the game for free by bringing a new, unwrapped toy for distribution by the Toys for Tots campaign to the upper concourse ticket windows beginning at 11:30 a.m. on Sunday.
The game is also serving as a Fight for Literacy Game sponsored by International Paper pas part of the Coaching For Literacy program. The program brings coaches, players and fans together in a common cause: ensuring American’s children can read.
To raise awareness about the issues connected to illiteracy, the LSU coaching staff as well as the UIW staff will wear Coaching for Literacy’s green tie provided by Peter Millar as well as the green lapel pin and wrist band.
The game will be televised by the SEC Network and will be broadcast on the affiliates of the LSU Sports Radio Network (Eagle 98.1 FM the BR flagship).
LSU (6-2) has won 12-straight games at the Maravich Center dating back to the final five home games of the 2017-18 season. That is the 11th-longest streak in the history of the building and a win against UIW will tie for the eighth longest streak at 13 games.
The Tigers have been off all week from playing with final exams that ended on Saturday. But the team has been practicing and with only one game in the last two weeks, the Tigers have been able to work on correcting things that Coach Will Wade has wanted to work one before the start Sunday of a three-game in seven day stretch with two of those games on the road.
After Sunday’s game, the Tigers will travel to Houston on Wednesday and will face Saint Mary’s next Saturday in a neutral site game in Las Vegas.
UIW is 5-5 on the season after an 82-57 win at home in San Antonio on Tuesday against Trinity. Christian Peevy had 23 points and 11 rebounds hitting on 8-of-13 field goals and all seven free throws. Charles Brown had 12 points, Jorden Kite 11 and Antoine Smith, Jr. 10. The Cardinals shot 54.5 percent overall in the win (30-of-55).
UIW leads the nation in free throw percentage at over 82 percent.
Coach Wade visited with the media on Thursday after his tipoff luncheon and here were some of his comments:
On what the most important thing to improve upon is...
“Being tougher. Getting tougher and grittier and grimier. Being able to dig out some wins down the stretch. Being able to dig out wins when everything doesn’t go our way and the game isn’t played exactly how we want it to be played.”
On how anxious the team is to get back on the floor on Sunday…
“They’ll be excited on Sunday to get back out there against Incarnate Word. We’ll be gone for a week on a road trip. We’ve got a lot of time to grow as a team and get better as a team. This is a time you can really improve just because you don’t have class and you limit some of the outside peripheral stuff. This is a time where we need to grow as a team, get better as a team and hopefully that will lead to us playing better as well.”
On Naz Reid transitioning from high school to college…
“Naz is doing well. You look at some of the freshmen around the country. Nassir Little comes off the bench for North Carolina. (Jahvon) Quinerly doesn’t even play sometimes for Villanova. It’s hard. It’s a major transition. For a lot of guys, this is the first time in their basketball lives that things haven’t gone exactly as they planned. When things don’t do as planned, in the past if they had a bad game, they could just show back up and everything would work out the next game because they were just so much better than everyone else. This is a great time for growth. It’s a great time for learning. I think our freshman and some of our newer guys have taken the right lessons from these situations. I think we’ll be better for it as we move towards conference play.
“He’ll continue to learn what he can and can’t do offensively, what he can and can’t get away with. Some of the things that worked before, aren’t going to work now. He’s got a good feel for that. He’s such a smart player. He’s such a smart person. He understands.”
On how the guard rotation worked last Saturday against Grambling State…
“Once we got into the swing of things the other day we rotated the three guards between the two spots. We rotated Marlon (Taylor) and (Darius) Days and then we rotated three of the bigs. We moved Days back and forth. Until we get Daryl (Edwards) back, we’ll probably continue with that rotation.”
On how valuable Darius Days is at the No. 3 spot…
“Very valuable. Days is a very valuable player. He’s a good commodity. He can play all over the place. You know what you’re going to get. He’s very dependable.”
On the timetable for Daryl Edwards’ return…
“It’s one of those deals where the more rest we can get him, the better. He’ll be able to function. There’s no cure for it. We’re trying to stimulate his bone growth. It will be one of those deals where he plays two games in a row, sits two games in a row. He may play one game then sit a game. We’re just going to have to go with how his body and how his leg feels.”
On if Darius Days can play extended minutes at the No. 3 spot…
“I think we will. We’ve only been practicing this way for a couple weeks. By the time we get a little bit further down the line, I think we’ll be able to.”
On the response he’s seen from the team this week heading into this four game stretch…
“You practice tough; you typically play tough. You practice soft, you play soft. I think we’ve been practicing a little bit tougher and I think we’ll be a little bit tougher. Now will that be tough enough to win those games? We’ll find out, but I think we will be tougher than we’ve been.”
On how his teams have improved over the holiday historically…
“I think we’ve certainly gotten better. We need to make drastic improvement right now. Over the course of a few years, I think we’ve definitely gotten better. I’ve changed my whole way of playing over the winter break before. I did that at Chattanooga. We played man and then we played zone the whole rest of the year. We worked on putting in this matchup zone the whole time. It’s a time where you can change things up a little bit. Typically we’ve made the right adjustments and that better be the case with this group.”