January 9, 2019 / 4:40 AM / 8 months ago

LSU builds early lead, holds off Alabama

Guard Tremont Waters had 19 points and seven assists, including one while lying on the floor that led to a dunk, and Kavell Bigby-Williams slammed home a missed layup with 78 seconds left to lift LSU to an 88-79 victory over Alabama Tuesday night at the Maravich Assembly Center in Baton Rouge, La.

Waters made 6 of 9 shots from the field, including 2 of 2 from long range, as LSU (11-3, 1-0 SEC) showed no ill effects from not having played in 11 days.

Coming off a 77-75 victory over Kentucky on Saturday, Alabama (10-4, 1-1 SEC) trailed by as many as 19 points in the second half. But the Tide used a 2-3 zone to cut the deficit to 79-75 with 1:46 left.

Ja’Vonte Smart, who had 15 points, missed a driving layup on LSU’s next possession, but Bigby-Williams grabbed the rebound and slammed it home for an 81-75 lead. Bigby-Williams finished with 14 points and 13 rebounds.

The Tigers, who had lost five consecutive games to Alabama, won for the sixth time in seven games and recorded their 16th consecutive home victory. The loss snapped Alabama’s five-game winning streak.

LSU also got 14 points from Darius Days. Alabama was led by Kira Lewis Jr. with 15 points and Alex Reese with 12 off the bench.

LSU held Alabama scoreless over the final 2:22 of the first half to take a 43-28 halftime lead. The Tigers’ final three baskets of the half were all 3-pointers, two by Smart and one by Days, who banked one off the glass at the buzzer.

LSU hit 8 of 10 from long range in the half, ending the half with an 11-3 run, while holding Alabama to 2 of 9 from long range.

Smart and Days led LSU with 11 first-half points, and Waters had 10 points and five assists.

Alabama shot well early on but missed 8 of its last 9 shots of the half.

LSU led 49-28 one minute into the second half. Alabama managed to cut the deficit to 70-62 with 6:40 left.

—Field Level Media

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