Tigers face WKU in consolation game

LSU men try to snap two-game skid at Charleston Classic

CHARLESTON, S.C. – The LSU men will try to get back in the win column today when they tangle with Western Kentucky at noon Friday in a consolation-bracket game at the Charleston Classic.

The Tigers (1-2) absorbed their second loss in a row Thursday, 88-82 to Northwestern. WKU lost to Tulsa 65-49 on Thursday.

LSU was ahead 41-32 at halftime, but couldn't hold off the Wildcats, especially forward John Shurna, who dumped in 37 points.

Freshman Johnny O'Bryant came off the bench to pace LSU with 22 points and 8 rebounds in the loss. He was 6-of-8 from the floor and 9-for-11 from the foul stripe. Andre Stringer added 15 points and buried three 3-pointers.

"That's a good basketball team we played," LSU coach Trent Johnson said. "The game never got away from us. Everybody wants to say we're young. We are going to be fine. The key for us as I told the players is making sure you stay the course and stay together. We are going to win our share of games. We've gotten beat by two experienced quality basketball teams. We've got to shore some things up defensively. We were better on the glass (Thursday). We've got to do a better job at the point of attack. This stuff (Northwestern) runs is hard to guard whether you are experienced or young."

Added O'Bryant, "We played a great first half. Northwestern is a great team and we didn't get down or give us when we fell behind and we were almost able to come back and get it. We need to keep our heads up, get ready for our next game and just keep working hard."

For the game, LSU shot 49.1 percent (25-of-55) hut was only 6-of-21 from beyond the arc (28.6%). Northwestern knocked down 12 3-pointers.

LSU had a 39-28 rebound advantage including 16-12 on the offensive board.

The winner of today's game will face either Virginia Commonwealth or Georgia Tech in the fifth-place game at 1:30 p.m. Sunday, while the losers of the two early games face off at 11 a.m. Sunday.

CHALK TALK

LSU (1-2)

Starters

G Anthony Hickey 5-11, 182, Fr. (10 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 11 assists)

G Andre Stringer 5-9, 178, So. (11.7 ppg, 8 assists)

G Ralston Turner 6-6, 205, So. (12 ppg, 2.7 rpg)

F Storm Waren 6-7, 230, Sr. (10 ppg, 6 rpg)

C Justin Hamilton 7-0, 260, Jr. (10 ppg, 5 rpg)

Key reserves

F Malcolm White 6-9, 220, Sr. (3 ppg, 2.3 rpg)

F Johnny O’Bryant 6-9, 262, Fr. (14 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 9-11 FT)

G John Isaac 6-2, 208, Fr. (5 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 8 assists)

G Chris Bass 6-1, 190, Sr. (1 ppg)

F Eddie Ludwig 6-9, 210, Jr. (3.3 ppg, 2.3 rpg)

Coach: Trent Johnson 50-51, fourth season at LSU; 209-171, 13th season)

 

Western Kentucky (1-2)

Starters

G Jamal Cook 6-3, 175, Jr. (5 ppg, 4 assists)

G Kahlil McDonald 6-3, 200, Sr. (7 ppg, 4 assists)

G Derrick Gordon 6-2, 185, Fr. (13.7 ppg, 7.3 rpg, 8 assists)

F Nigel Snipes 6-5, 205, Fr. (6.3 ppg, 4.3 rpg)

F Kene Anyigbo 6-5, 250, Jr. (5.3 ppg, 4.3 rpg)

Key reserves

F O’Karo Akamune 6-6, 205, So. (5.3 ppg, 5 rpg)

F Vinny Zollo 6-8, 240, Fr. (3.7 ppg, 6.3 rpg)

G Kevin Kaspar 6-0, 173, Fr. (5.7 ppg, 5 assists)

Coach: Ken McDonald (63-40, fourth season)

 

Up next: LSU takes on either Virginia Commonwealth or Georgia Tech in a consolation game at 11 a.m. or 1:30 p.m. Sunday

 

Of note

  • LSU has won both meetings against the Hilltoppers, most recently a 71-60 decision in Baton Rouge in 2009.
  • With 21 points vs. Northwestern Thursday, O’Bryant joined teammates Ralston Turner and Andre Stringer as current players who have scored 20 or more points as a freshman. Turner did so three times last season with a high of 23 against McNeese State and Stringer twice notched 21, including in his college debut against Northwestern State.
  • Gordon was limited to a season-low 6 points Thursday after coming into the tournament averaging 17.5 points a contest.
  • The WKU roster features seven freshmen, the program’s most since the 1976-77 season.

 


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