LSU’s Offense Erupts In 99-68 Win Over Arkansas
BATON ROUGE — No. 10 LSU put together another dominant performance en route to a 99-68 win over the Arkansas Razorbacks on Sunday afternoon inside the PMAC as all five starters scored at least 13 with both Hailey Van Lith and Mikaylah Williams with 20+.
For the second game in a row LSU’s defense was strong. It was the second consecutive game LSU held its opponent under 70 points and under 30-percent shooting from the field.
“I think we’re just getting better every day and being able to switch on all five players,” Angel Reese said of the team’s defensive improvement. “I believe that is a skill to our advantage as we can switch and guard all five positions, and it is a great thing to be a part of as everybody on the team can help out defensively and do whatever is asked of them.”
Mikaylah Williams led all scorers with 21 points on 9-14 from the field and 3 three-pointers, finishing one rebound shy of a double-double. The Freshman has now recorded her sixth game scoring 20 points or more.
“She is a three-dimensional player,” Coach Kim Mulkey said of her star freshman. “She can take you off the dribble and get layups, or stop and shoot the midrange or three. She can get anywhere she needs to on the floor.”
“I believe I am learning every game how to play overall effective basketball on both sides of the court,” Williams said. “I am taking what the defense gives me but continuously trying to learn and improve my game.”
Hailey Van Lith followed with 20 points and 6 assists. Her performance marked the second time this season she has reached 20 points and set a new season high with 5 rebounds. Angel Reese recorded another double-double with 16 points and 17 boards. She now has 11 double-doubles this season and has done it six times in her last eight games.
Other Tigers to reach double figures include Aneesah Morrow with 14 and Flau’Jae Johnson with 13. LSU also had solid contributions from its bench with 15 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists.
Samara Spencer led the Razorbacks with 20 points on 5-22 and 3 three-pointers. Spencer added 7 assists and 5 rebounds. Maryam Dauda and Makaylah Daniels were the only other Razorbacks to reach double figures with 16 and 13, respectively. LSU held Saylor Poffenbarger to two rebounds after she entered the game as the SEC’s leading rebounder, averaging just shy of 13 per game.
The Razorbacks as a team continued their trend of shooting a lot of three-point shots, going 12-47 from beyond the arc.
The Tigers will be back in action on Thursday night at 7 p.m. CT as College Gameday comes to town for a top ten matchup against No. 1 South Carolina. The hour-long show will begin at 6 p.m. CT on ESPN, leading straight into tipoff on the same channel. Doors to the PMAC are expected to open earlier than normal. The Gamecocks handled their business on Sunday to remain undefeated with a 99-64 win at Texas A&M.
The show will feature Elle Duncan, Carolyn Peck, Andraya Carter, Rebecca Lobo, and Holly Rowe live from the PMAC. Lobo and Rowe will join play-by-play voice Ryan Ruocco on the call for the game. It will be the first time ESPN hosts College Gameday for a women’s game in Baton Rouge.
The Tigers started the game on a 18-0 run that saw a pair of threes and points from 4 of the 5 starters. Dauda responded with back-to-back threes to put the Razorbacks on the board. Williams finished the quarter with ten points shooting 4-5 and two triples. LSU opened the first quarter shooting 50-percent from the field. Arkansas gained ground after making four threes in the first ten minutes and ended the quarter trailing LSU 25-16.
LSU went on a 7-0 run to extend its total past the 40 point mark and give the Tigers a 22-point lead. Van Lith capped off the run with a tough finish through a foul after a Aalyah Del Rosario block led to the fast break. Makayla Daniels made the Razorbacks fifth three of the night to move back within 20 before the media timeout. Reese hit her second three-pointer as a Tiger to extend the Tigers lead and continued the LSU shooting frenzy. LSU combined for 6 of its last 7 before the final minute of the quarter. The Tigers led the Razorbacks 55-28 at halftime.
Arkansas came into the game having shot and made the most threes this year in the SEC, but LSU beat the Razorbacks at their own game in the first half. The Tigers were 7-14 from beyond the arc in the first half as four Tigers made three pointers, including three by Williams. Arkansas made 5 of its 20 attempts from beyond the arc in the first half.
Arkansas hit back-to-back threes at the beginning of the third as LSU was unable to score for over two minutes. Morrow sparked a 8-2 run after she connected on a turnaround jumper to push LSU past 60. The run was capped off by a Van Lith triple to force Arkansas to call for a timeout. LSU ended the quarter on a 8-0 run and took a 30-point lead into the final quarter.
The Tigers kept their foot on the gas as they outscored Arkansas for the fourth straight quarter. LSU went 8-16 in the final quarter to hang on to its lead and hold off the Razorbacks. The visitors finished just 1 of its last 9 attempts and went without a field goal for the final 3:39 seconds.