Lady Tigers Open Season at Louisiana Tech
Sr. Assoc. Communications Director
BATON ROUGE, La. --- The LSU women’s basketball team opens the 2016-17 season on the road with an in-state matchup against the Louisiana Tech Lady Techsters on Friday. Tipoff is set for 6:30 p.m., at Thomas Assembly Center.
The LSU Sports Radio Network will carry the game on its flagship station Talk 107.3 FM in Baton Rouge. The radio broadcast featuring Patrick Wright, the voice of the Lady Tigers, also will be available for free at www.LSUsports.net/live.
The Lady Tigers are fairly inexperienced heading into the 2016-17 season. While the roster includes seniors Alexis Hyder, Rina Hill and Jasmine Rhodes, juniors Jenna Deemer and Raigyne Moncrief and sophomore Shanice Norton, there are two sophomore transfers (Tatum Neubert & Chloe Jackson) and five freshmen (Ayana Mitchell, Yasmine Bidikuindila, Faustine Aifuwa, Jaelyn Richard-Harris and Stephanie Self.) Jackson and Neubert have not seen game action on the court since the 2014-15 season, and Jackson only played four games that season because of an injury. Mitchell was poised to make a run for SEC freshman honors last season and was sidelined with a back injury after just three games last year. Bidikuindila, Aifuwa, Richard-Harris and Self are all true freshmen this year. The vets have Moncrief back in their arsenal as the junior missed all but three games last year with a knee injury.
“I am excited about the opportunity to go and play Louisiana Tech on the road,” said LSU head coach Nikki Fargas. “When you look at our roster, we are young in the sense that we have seven players who did not play last year, and to test them early is what you want. You want to see how we handle going into a place that we are unfamiliar with, that we are not going to have home crowd advantage. There are going to be certain things stacked against us, so to me that is really going to test who we are early.”
The Lady Tigers are expected to have the services of Mitchell and Moncrief back in the lineup. Both missed all but three games last year with injuries and neither were dressed out for the exhibition game last Sunday versus LeMoyne-Owen.
“Raigyne Moncrief is going to give us explosiveness with and without the basketball,” said Fargas. “She is one of our best on-the-ball defenders and rebounders. She and Ayana are going to add not only points to our offensive scheme, but they are also going to help keep points off the other side too.”
Louisiana Tech is under the direction of new head coach Brooke Stoehr. The Lady Techsters were 14-16 overall; 9-9 in Conference USA in 2015-16. Junior guard Ashley Santos is one of two returning starters from the previous campaign and is LA Tech’s leading returning scorer and rebounder, having averaged 9.6 points and 4.8 rebounds a game last year.
“LA Tech is a team that is explosive, and with their transition game they are able to get out quickly,” explained Fargas. “They are going to look to try and turn us over and force those opportunities. Their guard play is very good. We are going to have to be aware of everybody who is at least one pass away. We are going to have to play our defense strong.
“When you go on the road, you don’t necessarily shoot the ball very well but our goal is to get those easy opportunities,” added Fargas. “We want to establish our paint points, our running game and an inside-outside attack. A team like LA Tech will help prepare us, not only for our other games to come in our conference, but I think we have one of the toughest schedules in the country when you look at our non-conference schedule.”
LSU’s home opener is set for 6 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 13, against Wake Forest. That game will follow the LSU volleyball match against Mississippi State that begins at 1 p.m. Fans who attend the volleyball match will receive a free ticket to the basketball game that evening. There is also a schedule magnet giveaway planned for the game.
Season tickets are on sale now and start as low as $50 and single-game tickets start at just $5. For more information and to purchase tickets go to LSUtix.net or call the Athletics Ticket Office at (800) 960-8587 or (225) 578-2184. The Athletics Ticket Office, on the first floor of the Athletics Administration Building, is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays.
NOTES & TRENDS
• LSU leads the series with LA Tech, 16-12.
• LSU and Louisiana Tech played each other for nine-straight seasons before taking a break last year. The first game of that series was during the 2006-07 season as LSU logged the win, 61-44. That game was part of the Katrina Relief Classic hosted at the New Orleans Arena.
• LSU has won the last 10-straight games over LA Tech, which includes four-straight victories in Ruston.
• LA Tech’s last win over the Lady Tigers was on March 20, 1999, when the third-ranked Lady Techsters earned the 75-52 win over #20 LSU in the Sweet 16 hosted in Los Angeles, Calif.
Homecoming for Mickie DeMoss
Mickie DeMoss joined the Lady Tigers in May 2016 after spending the 2014-15 and 2015-16 seasons as associate head coach at Louisiana Tech. A native of Tallulah, La., DeMoss was a player on the inaugural Lady Techster team in 1974 and lettered for the first three years of the program’s existence. She was the very first point guard in the history of the program. DeMoss earned her bachelor’s degree in physical education from LA Tech in 1977.
Lady Tigers in Season Openers
The Lady Tigers open their 42nd season of women’s basketball action at Louisiana Tech on Friday. LSU is 32-9 all-time in season openers. The longest streak of opening day wins is eight games from the 2000-01 season to the 2007-08 season. LSU is looking to snap a streak of two-straight opening day losses. The Lady Tigers fell to Wake Forest on the road in 2015-16 and lost to Little Rock in the PMAC to open the 2014-15 season. There has been only one season opener that went into overtime, and that was to tip off the 2002-03 season. LSU, ranked No. 3 at the time, defeated Arizona on the road, 78-71.
Against Louisiana Teams in Season Opener...
The Lady Tigers are 13-1 when opening the season against a team from the Pelican State. The only loss was to McNeese State to open the 1981-82 season. In her five seasons, head coach Nikki Fargas has never opened a season against a Louisiana squad, and LSU has never opened a season against Louisiana Tech. The most common Louisiana teams that LSU has opened with have been Southeastern Louisiana (4-0) and Tulane (3-0).
Fargas is 12-4 vs Louisiana Schools
Head coach Nikki Fargas is 12-4 against Louisiana universities in her five seasons at LSU. All four of her losses have been to Tulane, which LSU hosts on Dec. 11. Fargas is 4-0 over Louisiana Tech, which includes two wins each at home and away.
Complete LSU Notes: http://lsul.su/2elzX6l
For all of the latest news and information on Lady Tiger basketball, visit www.LSUsports.net/womensbasketball. Fans also can follow the program on its social media outlets at www.Facebook.com/LSUwbkb, @LSUwbkb and @LSUNikkiFargas on Twitter, @LSUwbkb and @LSUNikkiFargas on Instagram.