If LSU wins in men's basketball one day under Will Wade as expected, one can only hope the Tigers' coach will be as plainspoken and open about his feelings as he is now.
As Saturday's game against reeling MS progressed, it became evident why Wade thought Reath represented the Tigers' best scoring threat against the Rebels.
Wade wasn't entirely pleased, however. Reath's 26 points were the second most points he scored against a SEC team in his career.
"There wasn't a lot of Xs and Os and strategy talked", Wade said. "Then we decided not to throw the ball into him because we don't like to win, or we don't like leads", Wade said. "So if you don't want to throw the ball into him and do what we want to do, you're going to sit". His 3-pointer pushed the margin to 66-49. He also went 5 of 6 on free throws.
But from there, Ole Miss broke out. We were trying to limit his post touches, but he was efficient. "We've got to play our best basketball and we've got to be consistent and frequent".
"Coach wants us to be active out there, just to play tough", said Epps said, who had 11 points and a game-high 9 rebounds.
Bruce Stevens and Deandre Burnett each scored 16 and Breein Tyree scored 10 for Ole Miss (11-14, 4-8), which has lost five straight and eight of nine.
"We build a 14-point lead in the first half and a 20-point lead in the second half", Wade said. They outscored Ole Miss 21-11 in that stretch, with every Tiger on the floor playing a specific role. Soon after, he converted a steal into a breakaway dunk to give LSU a 15-point lead at 61-46. LSU has won all nine of those games. After hitting 7-of-8 field goals in the opening 10 minutes, Reath didn't attempt another shot until the Tigers' first possession of the second half. It was the ninth time this season that LSU has shot 50 percent in a game and won this year and LSU is 10-0 dating back last year when shooting 50 percent or better. Reath, who even made his only 3-point attempt, was largely responsible for that. "If that wasn't going to change, we weren't going to change the outcome". "We shot it close to the rim tonight", Wade said.
The deep dive: LSU is one of six schools with at least six top 50 RPI wins. "It would increase our odds of winning if we can do that".
The Rebels next take on the LSU Tigers at 7 p.m. Thursday in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Lewis' 26 points and five rebounds led the Rebel effort with help from Gibson's 20 points and two rebounds.
Justas Furmanavicius' 3 marked the start or a 20-3 Rebels run.
LSU scored the first eight points of the game and took a 22-11 lead on Reath's layup midway through the first half.
After Terence Davis' jumper put Ole Miss up by three, Waters hit a straight-on 3 to tie it at 37 heading into halftime.
The Alabama women's basketball team's losing skid didn't end on Thursday against SC, but there were encouraging signs that better results are on the horizon for the Crimson Tide.
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