Feb. 14, 2010
Box Score |
AUBURN - Offensive woes continued to plague the Auburn women's basketball team (12-14, 3-10 SEC) as the Tigers fell 75-51 to No. 23 LSU Sunday afternoon in Beard-Eaves-Memorial Coliseum. Redshirt junior Jordan Greenleaf led the Tigers in scoring and rebounding for the second-consecutive game, finishing with 14 points and six boards.
"I think the game came down to the first half," said Auburn head coach Nell Fortner. "We turned the ball over too many times and we missed shots. When you miss easy shots it affects your confidence more than when you miss tough shots.
"It was the turnovers that really hurt us and we just could not get it back on track. In the second half we came out and did some nice things and competed hard. Give LSU credit, they answered everything we tried to do. It was just a tough day for us."
Auburn gave up 10 first-half turnovers for 15 LSU points. The Tigers were unable to create any momentum in the opening stages of the contest, starting out just 1-of-13 from the field. Auburn's top scoring threats, senior KeKe Carrier and junior Alli Smalley, were held to just 14 total points.
The LSU defense, fresh off a dominating, 70-30, road win at Florida, created problems for the Tigers from the opening whistle. Auburn turned the ball over four times in the first four minutes of play but was able to tie the game, 4-4, at the 15:25 mark.
However, it was all LSU from then on. The Tigers were held scoreless from the field for 10 minutes as the Bayou Bengals went on a 22-2 run, leaving the Tigers down 26-6 with six minutes left in the period.
"Our kids are resilient and they do not want to lose," said Fortner. "They work hard and they play hard. The problem we are having right now is that we are a little fragile.
"When things do not go well for us early, it is hard for us to bow up to that and get through it. But if things are not going well, you still have to play. We are in a tough place right now, but it is a great chance for us to build some character."
Auburn responded with a 7-2 run, starting with a Smalley jumper with 6:16 left to play, ending an Auburn draught. Freshman Blanche Alverson connected on a long 3-pointer to keep the Tigers rolling, but it was LSU's Allison Hightower responding with a run of her own.
Hightower went on a seven point tear to close the half as LSU took a commanding 42-13 lead into the locker room
Carrier, who had attempted just one shot from the field in the first half, started things out for Auburn in the second with a jumper off a dish from Greenleaf. Carrier finished the game with four points, shooting 2-of-3 from the field. Her four points were enough to tie her with Samantha Williams (1992-96) for 28th all-time at Auburn in career scoring with 971 points.
"We were going to double Carrier every time she touched it," said LSU head coach Van Chancellor. "I was really proud of us defensively. Our defense in the SEC has not been what it should have been, but the last two games it's been really good."
Seconds later, an uncontested three-pointer from Hightower pushed the LSU lead to 30. The Tigers were able to cut the LSU lead to 25 with 10:52 left in the game, as Greenleaf hit a jumper off a Morgan Toles assist. However, LSU never allowed the Tigers within range of a comeback. Auburn closed the game on an 11-4 run, falling to LSU by 24.
The Tigers shot 38 percent (18-of-48) from the field, 3-of-7 from 3-point range and 12-of-17 from the free throw line.
LSU shot 47 percent (27-of-48) from the field, 6-of-14 from three-point range and 15-of-18 from the line. Hightower led LSU in scoring with 29 points while LaSondra Barrett pulled down a team-high nine rebounds.
Auburn will take the week off this week and will return to action at 2 p.m., Feb. 21 as the Tigers travel to Mississippi State for a game at Humphrey Coliseum. The Bulldogs (17-9, 6-5 SEC) downed in-state rival Ole Miss, 73-54, Sunday in Starkville, Miss.