ATHENS, Ga. – Theresa Plaisance poured in 21 of her career-high 29 points during the second half as the No. 19 LSU women’s basketball team nearly rallied from an 18-point first half deficit, but Georgia was able to fend off the Lady Tigers with key baskets down the stretch to collect a 71-67 victory Thursday at Stegeman Coliseum.
LSU (18-8, 7-6 SEC) was handed its third consecutive loss but remained in a fourth place tie with Florida, Kentucky and Vanderbilt in the SEC standings. For Georgia (18-8, 6-7 SEC), it was the sixth win in its last nine games after starting SEC play with a 0-4 mark.
The 29 points for Plaisance came on 12-for-20 shooting. She connected on nine of her 11 attempts and scored 21 of LSU’s first 26 points during the second half. The New Orleans native also secured eight rebounds over her 37 minutes of action.
Jeanne Kenney chipped in 17 points and dished out five assists. Five of her six baskets came from beyond the three-point arc. The five triples allowed Kenney to vault past Scholandra Hoston (2001-06) and move into seventh place on LSU’s all-time list.
Danielle Ballard secured 11 points, six rebounds and two assists. It’s the third straight game the sophomore guard has reached double figures.
UGA was led by Erika Ford’s 20 points on 7-of-12 from the floor. She knocked down four jumpers inside the final 3:58 and scored 10 of the final 14 points for the Lady Bulldogs. Khaalidah Miller added 14 points followed by Shacobia Barbee’s 13 points, nine rebounds and five assists.
Georgia put together a run of 20 consecutive points over a 6:42 stretch to grab a 22-4 edge at the 9:53 mark of the first half. The duo of Barbee and Miller combined to tally 14 points, and the Lady Bulldogs made 10 of their first 18 shots. LSU misfired on nine straight field goal attempts and committed four turnovers during the flurry.
LSU found its rhythm behind Kenney who drilled four triples en route to 14 consecutive points for the Lady Tigers to bring the deficit back to 27-18 with 5:49 remaining.
LSU appeared to cut the margin down to six points, but Moncrief’s three-pointer at the buzzer was waved off after an official review to make the score 36-27 going into halftime.
Plaisance registered 12 of LSU’s first 14 points of the second half, and LSU got back to within one possession at 44-41 with 15:05 left on the clock.
Georgia steadied itself with seven of the next eight points capped by a Krista Donald trifecta on the right baseline off an out-of-bounds play to go back up by a 51-42 margin at the 13:09 mark.
LSU charged back to within two points on five separate occasions inside the final 4:14 of the contest. Each time, the Lady Bulldogs answered behind Ford jumpers on three of the five times.
LSU’s final comeback effort came after a Kenney three-ball with 24 seconds to go made the score 69-67. Georgia was able to break the Lady Tigers full court pressure and Barbee knocked down a pair of free throws to finish off the 71-67 decision.
LSU returns home Sunday to square off with Arkansas as part of Alumnae Day. Tip time is scheduled for 1 p.m. from the Maravich Center, and the game will be carried by Cox Sports Television. The LSU Sports Radio Network will broadcast the game on Talk 107.3 FM in Baton Rouge and inside the Geaux Zone at www.LSUsports.net/live. Patrick Wright, the voice of the Lady Tigers, will have the radio call.
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