After struggling for weeks trying to score the ball, the Tigers had relied on their defense to stay close in games. Wednesday night, LSU found its offense.
But away went the "D."
Jermareo Davidson scored 31 points
on 12 of 20 shooting as the Alabama Crimson Tide downed reeling LSU 73-70 at the
"We improved on offense tonight, we just could stop people," a very concerned Brady said afterwards.
LSU took the lead with a Darnell Lazare jump shot with 4:12 left to play in the first half. The Tigers held that lead, by as many as eight points with 9:33 left in the game, until the final minute of the game.
With the Tigers up 68-67 heading
into the final minute, Davidson accounted for a pair of free throws giving the
Tide (16-5, 3-4) its first lead in over a half. Alonzo Gee added another two
free throws for a three-point Tide lead. Chris Johnson threw down a desperation
dunk getting it to a single point with LSU trailing 71-70. But the Tigers never
got another shot as Davidson punctuated the game with a last second dunk and the
three-point victory for the visitors from
"We have to play better in the last
five minutes of a game," Brady said. "We didn't play well against
LSU scored all of two points in the final 2:45 left in regulation.
"We have to get back to playing well on defense," Brady said. "I was pleased with our effort tonight. We had some guys play well and improve, but we still need to make something outside of six or eight feet."
The Tigers shot a sparkling 51.9-percent from the field (28 of 54). But LSU was 3 of 12 from beyond the three-point line. After shooting 64-percent in the opening half, the Tigers closed out the game shooting just 41.9-percent in the last 30 minutes.
On LSU's second possession of the game, Johnson opened the contest with a bang draining a wide open three-pointer from the top of the key giving the Tigers a 3-0 lead with 19:25 to go in the first half.
But Jermareo Davidson tied the game at 3-3 when he dunked over Tasmin Mitchell and drew the foul, sank the free throw just under two minutes into the game.
But Terry Martin made it a three-point game once again rattling in a three-ball for a 6-3 lead at the 18-minute mark.
After Davidson answered with a contested layup off an offensive board, Mitchell converted a layup of his own on the other end off a nice pass from Martin on the perimeter for an 8-5 Tiger advantage.
Davidson gave the Tide its largest lead so far 11-8 when he drove the basket and made a layup look easy over the much thinner Johnson.
Alonzo Gee extended that lead to 13-8 when he buried a jumper from the free throw line with 13:55 left to go in the first half. Gee followed it up with an easy lay-in in transition off a Martin turnover as he shot past Magnum Rolle on the other end for a 15-8 lead.
Glen Davis got involved for the first time of the night with a long jump shot from the left wing and a 15-10 Tiger deficit.
After the teams traded possessions,
Davidson grabbed a loose ball in
the air for a rocking slam dunk as Bama moved out in front 17-13. But
On LSU's next possession,
Mitchell tied the game with a pair of free throws at the 9:05 mark if the first half and after Davidson got tagged with a double-dribble, Mitchell added a smooth lay-in for a 22-20 lead.
Things got worst for
Davidson tied the game at 24-24 with another jump shot coming out of the timeout.
But Davidson hit another jumper and
Gee threw down a run-out dunk over
Coming out of the timeout, LSU
faced a serious situation with the shot clock. With two ticks left on the shot
Bama turned the ball over on the other end, which Ben Voogd advanced down to an awaiting Mitchell, who sank a jumper for a six-point 34-28 LSU lead.
At the one-minute mark,
LSU got possession with just under
20 seconds left on the first half clock. Brady called a quick timeout and setup
one last play. Voogd brought the ball in with six ticks left. Driving into the
lane, Voogd dished to a rather surprised
LSU led 38-34 at the half, a half in which the Tigers shot an eye-popping 64-percent (16 of 25) from the field.
The second half started slow but a pair of Johnson free throws made it a six-point 40-34 LSU lead.
The teams traded punches for the next three possessions as a Hendrix hook shoot made it a 42-38 game with 17:55.
But Riley cut the lead to all of two points on back-to-back three-pointers on consecutive possessions. Brady angrily called a timeout with 16:18 left in the game, leading 46-44.
Johnson scored his ninth point of
the game on a picture-perfect mid-range jumper for a four-point Tiger lead –
Davidson overpowered Johnson on the other end for a powerful layup, but Johnson nailed in another mid-range jumper for his 11th point of the game, his first double digit scoring game of the season and a 52-45 LSU lead.
But as quick as Johnson could score, Davidson knocked down another jumper on the other end again chipping away at the Tigers lead closing the gap to four points, 52-48 with 13:26 left in regulation.
Mason got his stroke on scoring his first points of the game with a baseline jumper and a 54-48 lead coming out of the media timeout.
But just as LSU got it to six,
Davidson was tripped by
A sweet wrap-around pass from
Hendrix netted a hook shot off the
Darnell Lazare stole the inbounds pass and quickly sank the mid-range jumper. Things really began going the Tigers way when Voogd stole the in bounds pass and banged in a layup high off the glass for an eight-point 62-54 lead at the 9:30 mark.
The PMAC erupted to its loudest point in some time as Voogd danced to the bench sky high in the arms of his teammates.
A pair of Davidson free throws got
Gee shaved the LSU lead to a mere two points with a jump shot from the left wing as the Tigers entered three minutes without points.
But finally Mitchell broke LSU's scoreless drought with a baseline jumper extending LSU's lead back to four points 64-60.
A reverse layup by
Rolle took a play out of his buddy Johnson's playbook and pulled up for a free throw line jumper, which popped the net for a five-point Tiger lead, 68-63.
But Davidson wouldn't let the Tide go quietly as again a big man drilled a free throw line jump shot. Davidson's 15-footer closed the gap to another three-point deficit as the Tide trailed 68-65 with 3:46 left in regulation.
Riley cut it to a one-point game with 2:52 left to play with a pair of free throws stemming from a Martin foul.
The teams battled for possession inside the last two minutes with neither do much in the way of offense. But Bama gained control of the ball with 48 seconds remaining. Davidson drove to the basket and drew a foul sending him to the line. After sinking both free throws, the Tide had the lead for the first time since midway the first half.
But with 30 seconds left in the
On LSU's initial possession
following the Davidson free throws,
Johnson was nearly the hero on a three-point attempt from the near corner, which would have tied the game. But his shot rimmed out and there was a mad scramble for the ball. Eventually, Johnson ended up with the loose ball, which he flushed for a one-point, 71-70 deficit.