LSU pulls away in second half to drop Ole Miss, 82-66
BATON ROUGE – The LSU Tigers won its third straight home game, outscoring Ole Miss 45-29 in the final 20 minutes to score an 82-66 win Saturday afternoon over the Rebels.
The Tigers are now at 14-10 overall and 5-7 in the league heading to Tuscaloosa for an 8 p.m. game with Alabama. Ole Miss drops to 11-14 and 4-8 in the league.
Duop Reath dominated the competition scoring 26 points, hitting 10-of-12 field goals attempts, including his one three-point shot and 5-of-6 at the line. He was one of four players in double figures with Skylar Mays getting 17 points and Tremont Waters and Aaron Epps 11 each. Waters had eight assists and just one turnover in 31 minutes, while Epps had nine rebounds to go with his 11 markers.
Bruce Stevens and Deandre Burnett each had 16 points for Ole Miss while Breein Tyree had 10.
LSU shot 50 percent from the floor (29-of-58) for the game, but made just 6-of-23 three-pointers (26.1%). The Tigers were right on average at the free throw line, making 18-of-24 (75%). Ole Miss shot 37.1 percent for the game (23-of-62) and just 8-of-29 in the second half. The Rebels made just 6-of-29 three-pointers and 14-of-20 free throws.
LSU had a dominating 44-22 advantage in points in the paint in the game.
The Tigers appeared early to be able to control the game in the first half, building a 14-point, 31-17, advantage with 6:01 to go before intermission, but LSU let Ole Miss take advantage of the boards and began to make a dent in things, going on a 20-6 run to go to the intermission tied at 37.
Ole Miss actually took the lead on a jumper by Justas Furmanavicius, 35-34, with 1:25 left and then after an LSU miss, 37-34, with 47 seconds left on a Terrance Davis jumper. Waters came back on the Tigers final possession of the half to tie the game going to the dressing room.
But LSU returned to working the ball back inside in the second half and took the lead for good 23 seconds in on a three-pointer by Mays, who for the second straight Saturday, scored 15 points in the second 20 minutes. The lead blew up with LSU up six, 52-46, with 12:57 left as the Tigers scored the next nine points on a layup by Wayde Sims, a three-point play by Mays, a Sims layup and a Mays dunk.
That made it 61-46 with 10:24 to play and LSU would expand the margin to as much as 20 twice on Reath free throws at 7:06 and against with 3:46 to go, 81-61, on a Daryl Edwards trey.
The Rebels had no answer as LSU was able to even its conference record at home at 3-3 and win for the 10th time in 14 home games. It was the ninth time this season that LSU has shot 50 percent in a game and won this year and LSU is 10-0 dating back last year when shooting 50 percent or better.
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