What else did you expect from these Tigers this season?
Coming off a deflating home loss to Tennessee, LSU (22-9, 11-7) went into Bud Walton Arena, where the Hogs had lost only once prior this season, on Saturday and beat No. 18 Arkansas (24-7, 13-5) by the final of 81-78 without Jordan Mickey, the nation's leading shot-blocker averaging nearly a double-double.
The Tigers landed the exhilarating win courtesy a corner three from junior Keith Hornsby as time expired. Hornsby caught a Josh Gray pass and released with 0.6 seconds to play, sending the ball though the hoop - and likely LSU to the NCAA Tournament - as the final horn sounded in Fayetteville.
Down one of its most important players in Mickey (shoulder), LSU leaned on Jarell Martin. The sophomore responded with a game-high 27 points and eight rebounds, staking the Tigers to an early lead they carried on the road for the majority of the ballgame.
Arkansas made its run after halftime, when LSU led 41-35, and ultimately took its first lead of the half, 71-70, in a back-and-forth game with 3:32 to play when Alandise Harris made a pair of free throws.
Michael Qualls made a layup almost 30 seconds later to give the Razorbacks a three-point cushion, but LSU finished strong, scoring 11 of the game's final 16 points.
Freshman guard Jalyn Patterson played Robin to Martin's Batman, scoring a career-best 20 points, including 6-of-8 made threes, six rebounds and two steals.
Hornsby, the hero, totaled 13 points, six rebounds and two assists. It was the 14th straight game in double figures scoring for the junior transfer.
Maybe the most unexpected contribution, however, came from point guard Josh Gray, who had been lost in the rotational shuffle of late. Gray saved his most memorable performance for the final game of the regular season, recording 10 points and five assists versus only one turnover.
Bobby Portis, without Mickey to contend with, carried the load for the Hogs, posting an emphatic double-double of 21 points and 15 rebounds. For good measure the SEC Player of the Year candidate added four assists and two blocks.
LSU, after a series of fortuitous events Saturday, will be the four-seed in this week's SEC Tournament in Nashville, recipients of a double-bye through to Friday.
LSU stuns Arkansas at the buzzer
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