LSU (15-9,6-7) played one of their better games, but still fell short to Tennessee (15-10,7-6) Tuesday night. LSU was led by Johnny O'Bryant who scored 24 points on 9 of 16 shooting and 6 of 8 from the free throw line. He also had 8 rebounds and 2 steals. Tennessee had Jordan McRae make all 6 of his three pointers en route to a career high 34 points. He added 6 rebounds and 3 steals. Trae Golden also scored 20 points and 8 assists as the duo scored 54 of Tennessee's 82 on the night.
If you look at LSU's team line, it would be good enough to win on most nights. The team shot 51.3% (20-39) from two point range, 33.3% (6-18) from three point range and almost 78% (14-18) from the free throw line. They out-rebounded Tennessee 29 to 27, including 15 offensive rebounds. They only had 13 turnovers and stole the ball 7 times. Overall, LSU played one of their better games. They did leave shooters open occasionally, but Tennessee is 284th in the NCAA in three point shooting. Unfortunately for LSU, Tennessee made 10 of 15 from deep more than doubling their average.
Anthony Hickey hit three big deep balls and ended the night with 14 points. Andre Stringer had 8 points on seven shots and Andrew Del Piero had 5 points on two shots, including a monster "And 1" dunk that will definitely go on the Tuba Highlight reel. Malik Morgan scored 12 points on 7 shots and made both of his free throws.
Kentucky ran into a sleeping giant Saturday night. That giant has awoken. The last two games, Tennessee has played like one of, if not the top team in the SEC. When Tennessee has McRae and Golden hitting shots they will be tough to defend. LSU did a pretty good job containing Jarnell Stokes who had 13 points and 11 rebounds. He tied Johnny O'Bryant for the SEC lead in Double Doubles at 11 on the season. Image: http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-3oa5qIT46PI/USTJWQV-znI/AAAAAAAABC0/XbBWnqxlmRY/s1600/SoS+post+Tenn.png
Johnny O'Bryant has been on a tear the past four games. He is playing like everyone thought he would and is really making a move for possible All-SEC Honors. I'll tell you, no coach wants to face him right now. We also saw productive games from Malik Morgan and Andrew Del Piero who both played well. Malik had a career high 12 points, 2 rebounds and an assist before fouling out late in the second half. The biggest question may be where Chalres Carmouche was. He played three early minutes but never returned. The most obvious answer would be his knee tendinitis may have flared up during this 3 games in 6 day stretch. His defense could have been very key down the stretch on an on fire McRae, but unfortunately, he was not available.
I still think LSU played well enough to win. Tennessee just played better. That being said, I hope this game gives LSU confidence moving on. They still have big road games versus Texas A&M and Missouri. This weekend they have a big game against Alabama who currently sits at #2 in the SEC. LSU still has things to accomplish. They are coming together and despite the loss, should leave knowing they played a very good game on the road. I don't think Florida, Missouri, Ole Miss, or any other SEC team could have beaten Tennessee last night. LSU gave it their all but it wasn't enough. Up Next:
LSU vs Alabama
Saturday, February 23rd @ 12:30