Lady Tigers win exhibition basketball opener in Italy

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ROME, Italy – The LSU women’s basketball team opened their exhibition schedule in Italy on a good note Sunday evening with a 76-40 win over an Italian All-Star team.

The game was played at the Stella Azzurra Sports Center in Rome.

Junior Chloe Jackson led LSU with 17 points, while sophomore Ayana Mitchell just missed a double double with 15 points and a team-high nine rebounds. Senior guard Raigyne Moncrief-Louis posted 14 points, six rebounds and a team high four steals on an afternoon when the Lady Tigers were able to get 15 steals.

Freshman guard Khayla Pointer from Kennesaw, Georgia, led the team in assists with three.

“Well, it was great to be able to play the entire roster today,” said LSU Lady Tigers Head Coach Nikki Fargas. “We got a lot of different combinations in there. We did meet our defensive goal. We want to be that team that turns people over 30-plus times and coverts those deflections into turnovers. I thought we did some good things offensively as well. We had some good looks on the offensive glass. We are a little rusty in some areas. For it to be Day 1, the work this team has done has put them into getting to this position. We are very pleased with their conditioning and we are just going to continue to grow and get better as a team.”

Moncrief-Louis also liked some of the things she saw in the opening contest.

“I thought our team did great today even though we have a lot of work to do,” she said. “It’s great to have depth on the team. I thought the freshmen did really well adjusting to college level play. And it’s also great to have a good inside game.”

The game was really decided early on as LSU scored 23 first quarter points to build an 11-point, 23-12 lead and then pretty much iced it in the second 10 minutes, outscoring Italy, 28-8 to go to the half up, 51-20. That allowed Coach Fargas to try different combinations in the second half as LSU outscored the All-Stars, 25-20, in the final 20 minutes.

The team moves from Rome to Florence as the tour continues on Monday with their next game scheduled for Thursday in Triste against the ASD Pallacanestro Inter Club Muggia.

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