It’s been “survive and advance” mode for the LSU Tigers men’s basketball as they navigate the SEC Tournament. They defeated the Georgia Bulldogs in a close one last night 72-67 but had their season end on Thursday to Vanderbilt. KJ Williams’ heroic effort wasn’t enough as the Commodores eliminated LSU 77-68.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
Neither team started the game fast as we had 11 total points in the first four and a half minutes of the game. Tyrin Lawrence and Ezra Manson opened up the scoring for the Commodores with a few layups while Trey Hannibal was the only Tiger putting the ball in the basket.
Colin Smith’s shot clock-beating three-pointer and layup the following possession gave Vandy the 11-5 lead and would be the start of a 22-9 run.
KJ Williams scored seven out of LSU’s nine during that run while Paul Lewis made two straight from behind the arc to give Vanderbilt the 28-14 lead and force Matt McMahon to call a timeout with 7:46 left in the first half.
LSU cut it to within six with under a minute to go but Lawrence knocked down a couple from the charity stripe as Vandy went into the break up 37-29. Those free throws put his point total to 13 to lead all scorers while Williams was the leading scorer for the Tigers with 10. LSU made 1/3 of their shots from range and the floor and was down by four rebounds.
Williams came out of the locker room on fire scoring seven straight to cut the Tiger deficit to one just two minutes in.
The Commodores responded with a 12-0 run, highlighted by Manjon who scored seven and also contributed in other stats. Williams broke LSU’s drought as they shot 0/10 when he banked in a three-point shot from about 27 ft.
Jordan Wright made it a 13-point game as knocked down both of his free throws after Adam Miller (who really struggled to shoot in this game) picked up his third personal foul with 10:44 left in the second half.
Vandy would hold on to a sizable lead the rest of the way as they defeated the LSU Tigers 77-68 to eliminate them from the SEC Tournament and end their 2022-2023 season.
BIG NUMBER: 3
KJ Williams tried to keep LSU’s chances alive as he put up 26 points and 11 rebounds, but it wasn’t enough as Vanderbilt had three players contribute to the scoring with at least 15 points from each of them. Tyrin Lawrence was the leading scorer for the Commodores with 22 points.
PLAYER OF THE GAME: Jordan Wright
Wright had himself a double-double with 15 points and 15 boards as Vanderbilt eliminated LSU from the SEC Tournament and ended their season Thursday with a 77-68 win.
UP NEXT: The LSU men’s basketball team will have to wait until the beginning of next season as coach Matt McMahon will begin year number two with his Tigers squad.