LSU women’s basketball staves off Missouri’s comeback, improves to 4-2 in SEC play

COLUMBIA, Mo. — The LSU women’s basketball team made enough free throws and defensive stops to stave off Missouri’s big comeback Monday night in a 66-64 victory.

As a reward, the Lady Tigers (6-6 overall) improved to 4-2 in Southeastern Conference play and have six days off before welcoming No. 4 South Carolina to the Pete Maravich Assembly Center on Sunday.

It looked like LSU would cruise against Missouri (5-4, 1-3 SEC). It built a 54-38 lead early in the fourth quarter, only to have Mizzou storm back with a 19-4 run to cut the lead to 58-57 with 2:37 to play.

Khayla Pointer, who scored 16 of her game-high 22 points in the second half, hit a jump shot to increase LSU’s lead to 3 and later hit two free throws to make it 64-59.

But Missouri closed to one point behind a third time in the closing seconds when Aijha Blackwell hit a 3-pointer to make it 65-64 with 3.1 seconds left. The referees called a technical foul on Missouri in the ensuing timeout, and Tiara Young made one of two free throws. LSU’s inbounds pass was deflected, but time expired before it went out of bounds.

Young scored 16 points for LSU, and Faustine Aifuwa had 12 points and eight rebounds. The Lady Tigers shot only seven 3-pointers but made four of them, and they held Missouri to 5 of 17 from outside the arc.

Blackwell had 14 points and 11 rebounds for Mizzou, but LSU also forced her into seven turnovers.

LSU led 15-8 after the first quarter and 28-20 at halftime and used a 10-2 run midway through the third quarter to stretch the lead out to 48-34.

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