Lady Tigers Fall in Overtime at Tulane, 65-62
NEW ORLEANS - Danielle Blagg scored a game-high 22 points, including a game-winning lay-up with 1.2 seconds left to break a 62-62 tie, as Tulane stunned the 20th-ranked LSU women's basketball team by a score of 65-62 in overtime on Saturday night in Fogelman Arena.
The Lady Tigers (2-1) dropped their second straight game to the Green Wave, who beat LSU on its home floor for the first time since 1999. The loss snapped the Lady Tigers' winning streak against Louisiana opponents on the road, which ended at 11. It was the first loss by LSU on the road to a Louisiana team since that Dec. 31, 1999 contest.
"Give Tulane a lot of credit, they made plays when they needed to," said LSU head coach Nikki Caldwell. "This is a game we will definitely learn from and we will be better from it. We had some miscommunication at the end of the game, but games like this shouldn't come down to one play. We can't allow a team to out-rebound us on the road. We missed a lot of closeouts and missed a lot of our rotations (defensively)."
Tulane leading scorer Olivia Grayson, who was the catalyst for the Wave's win in Baton Rouge last season, was shutout through the first stanza. Grayson then responded with 21 points in the second half and buried four three-pointers. The Green Wave shot 10-of-20 from beyond the arc for the game despite committing 24 turnovers, which LSU converted into 24 points.
"Grayson made some big baskets and had an unbelievable second half," said Caldwell. "When you face players that are feeling good about their offensive game, defensively, we have to be able to accept that challenge of shutting them down. We didn't tonight."
LSU led 26-23 at halftime before falling behind as many as 10 points with 11:08 to go in regulation. Grayson scored Tulane's first 10 points of the second half and the Green Wave put together a 15-6 spurt out of the locker room. Jamie Kaplan's three increased the Tulane advantage to double-digits, 46-36.
A 13-4 run over the next eight minutes by LSU finally put the Lady Tigers back in front, culminating with a Bianca Lutley lay-up at the 3:51 mark that made it 50-49. The teams traded threes with under two minutes to play by Grayson and Jeanne Kenney.
Tulane held a 58-57 lead with 8.5 seconds left in regulation. Lutley missed a runner through the lane, but Kenney gathered the rebound and drew a foul with 1.4 seconds left. She swished the first one to tie the game, but missed the second as time expired in regulation.
For the second time in three years, LSU and Tulane played overtime in Fogelman Arena. Barrett got the Lady Tigers on the board first, but the Green Wave scored four straight and converted an errant pass from Destini Hughes into points. Forthan answered with a clutch shot to tie it at 62 with 23 seconds left in overtime.
The Wave took a timeout with two seconds remaining and got the ball underneath their basket. Kaplan found a wide open Blagg in the paint and she laid it in, drew a foul on Forthan and made the ensuing free throw. A half court heave by Kenney as time expired bounced off the backboard as Tulane pulled the upset, 65-62.
Saturday's game was the first of three contests in four days for LSU, who hosts Arkansas-Pine Bluff on Monday and Northwestern (Ill.) on Tuesday. Both contests tipoff at 7 p.m. in the Maravich Center and both will be carried live on the LSU Sports Radio Network on 107.3 FM in Baton Rouge or to members of the Geaux Zone on www.LSUsports.net/live.