Cleaning the Glass: LSU

Jan. 20, 2018

By Zac Ellis

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Vanderbilt refused to let its latest SEC game slip through its fingers.

The Commodores led by as many as 16 points in the second half on Saturday before visiting LSU rallied to take a one-point led with less than three minutes to play. But Vanderbilt buckled down to outscore the Tigers 12-7 from that point on for a 77-71 win at Memorial Gym.

Here’s how it went down:

THE SKINNY: Vanderbilt led by eight points early before LSU shot back to tie things up, 15-15, at 8:52. The Commodores matched that intensity with a 9-0 run that helped them carry a 34-28 lead into half. In the first 20 minutes, Vanderbilt shot 14-27 (52 percent) from the field. After their eventual 16-point led was flipped to a one-point deficit, the Commodores buckled down with defense and hit free throws down the stretch to secure their second SEC win of the season.

TURNING POINT: LSU’s Duop Reath dropped in a layup to give the Tigers a 65-64 lead with 2:18 to play, their first of the game. But Vanderbilt bounced back with two free throws from Riley LaChance and four straight points from freshman Saben Lee to lead 70-67 with 46 seconds left. That was part of a 12-7 Commodore run to end the game.

IMPACT PLAYER: Saben Lee. LaChance (26 points) and Jeff Roberson (20) led the offense, but the freshman from Phoenix scored 10 of his 12 points in the second half and was key down the stretch. After his bucket with 47 seconds left, Lee had scored 10 of Vanderbilt’s last 12 points. He finished with 12 points, five rebounds and five assists.

STARTLING STAT: 67 – Vanderbilt’s free-throw percentage. The Dores hit their foul shots late, going 9-11 in the final two minutes, but they were just 11-19 prior to that. Those miscues nearly cost Vanderbilt a tight SEC game at home.

WHAT IT MEANS: The Commodores snap a four-game losing streak to move to 2-5 in the SEC and 7-12 overall.

WHAT’S NEXT: Vanderbilt travels to Knoxville for a matchup with rival Tennessee on Tuesday. Tipoff is 6 p.m. CT on ESPNU.

Zac Ellis is the Writer and Digital Media Editor for Vanderbilt Athletics.


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