LSU gets past Auburn, 87-80

A strong second half propelled LSU to a 87-80 victory against Auburn on Saturday in the PMAC. Five LSU players scored in double digits led by Johnny O'Bryant's 19 and five three-pointers from Anthony Hickey.

A strong second half propelled LSU to a 87-80 victory against Auburn on Saturday at the PMAC.

LSU had five players score in double digits, including 35 combined from guards Anthony Hickey and Andre Stringer. The win got LSU moving back in the right direction after a disappointing loss Thursday to Georgia.

"It's always good to win," said LSU coach Johnny Jones. "We came back home after some tough road games, but it's always good getting a win. Especially after a setback where you can bounce back to give you some energy heading into the next game."

LSU trailed by one at halftime as Auburn's Chris Denson dropped 19 points in the first 20 minutes. LSU opened the game in zone defense but the visiting Tigers were aggressive driving to the lane, scoring 22 of their 33 first half points in the paint.

But LSU came out of halftime on a 13-5 run to push back in front. Anthony Hickey was a big reason why the LSU offense came out with that surge. He sunk a pair of three pointers in the first three minutes of the half, and finished the game 5-for-7 from behind the arch and 6-for-8 from the field.

"Me, Andre and the other perimeter guys were lighting it up tonight," Hickey said. "That took a lot of pressure off Johnny and hew as able to get one-on-one matchups."

For O'Bryant it was a much better night than that game in Athens. He avoided foul troubleand led the way scoring with 19 pounds and added 10 rebounds. He also made seven of his nine free throw attempts.

LSU controlled the game for much of the second half, leading by as much as 14 points with 4:18 to play in the game. But Auburn did manage to claw their way back into it, trailing by as few as five points with 10 seconds to go.

But the Bayou Bengals sealed the victory at the line. Andre Stringer sunk seven free throws in the game's final minute to ice the victory.

LSU moves to 15-7 on the season, with a 6-4 mark in conference play. They'll return to action Wednesday on the road against Texas A&M.

"We just needed the win," O'Bryant said. "The one thing about our team is we're always pushing. Guys never satisfied with wins and we don't get down on losses. We just take it one game at a time and we're always looking at the next game."

The Tigers will likely be without the services of Malik Morgan for that contest and likely the rest of the season. Morgan went up for a layup late in the second half, but his knee gave way and buckled underneath him. Morgan fell to the floor and was slow to get up as trainers assisted him to the sideline.

Jones said after the game that Morgan suffered a knee injury, but didn't know the extent. He did say "it doesn't look good" and Morgan will continue to be evaluated by team doctors.

For more notes and quotes from the game, head to the TSD Message Board and discuss the Tigers' victory against Auburn.


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