Jarell Martin and Jordan Mickey each scored 12 points and Tim Quarterman handed out nine assists as the three freshmen helped LSU to an 86-63 victory against UAB on Saturday afternoon at the PMAC.
UAB had reduced an early nine-point deficit to six at 17-11 on a three-point play by Chad Frazier with 14:51 remaining in the first half. LSU proceeded to build a 14-point advantage thanks to an 11-3 run. Martin and Andre Stringer connected on 3-pointers. Mickey and Shavon Coleman also made baskets. A foul shot by Quarterman put the Tigers ahead 28-14 with 11:55 remaining in the first half. LSU expanded its advantage to 16 points at 49-33 by halftime.
KEY PERIOD IN FIRST HALF
Looking for a quick start, the Tigers got 3-pointers on three straight possessions to snap a 4-4 tie. A trey by Martin gave LSU the lead for good. Anthony Hickey followed with consecutive baskets from behind the arc to give the Tigers a 13-4 lead with 17:10 left before halftime.
KEY PERIOD IN SECOND HALF
On two occasions in the first ten minutes of the second half, the Blazers reduced their halftime deficit to ten points - the last coming at 60-50. LSU then went on a 12-3 run to ice the victory. Quarterman made two baskets, one a 3-pointer. Mickey and Johnny O'Bryant started the outburst with baskets. Two foul shots by John Odo with seven minutes to play put the Tigers ahead 72-53. LSU was on top by at least 15 points for the rest of the game.
LSU'S TOP STARTER
O'Bryant was the leading scorer for the Tigers with 17 points. He kept the team afloat in the first nine minutes after halftime. O'Bryant was the only LSU player to score in that stretch. O'Bryant scored nine of his 13 second-half points during that time. O'Bryant was 6-of-12 from the field and 5-of-7 from the foul line. He grabbed five rebounds, blocked two shots and recorded two assists.
LSU'S TOP RESERVE
With Hickey in early foul trouble, Quarterman was pressed into action and played spectacularly in the first half. In 15 minutes, Quarterman accounted for four points, six assists and two steals. He added five points and three assists in the second half. Quarterman had season highs in points with nine and assists with nine. After making two treys in the first eight games, Quarterman connected on two 3-pointers against UAB.
LSU'S UNSUNG HERO
Mickey bounced back from a foul-plagued outing against Texas Tech to score 12 points and grab six rebounds against UAB. Mickey was 6-of-10 from the floor. Twice in the second half, the Blazers reduced their deficit to ten points. On both occasions, Mickey answered with field goals. He blocked four shots raising his season total to 36.
LSU shot the higher field goal percentage and, as a result, won the game. LSU made 49 percent (32-of-66) of its field goal attempts, while UAB shot just 30 percent (21-of-69). The Tigers matched their season-high with ten 3-pointers, while the Blazers were just 1-of-16 from behind the arc. In addition, LSU equaled its season-low in turnovers with ten. The Tigers matched their season-high in assists with 20. LSU had a comfortable 24-9 margin in bench points. UAB grabbed 22 offensive rebounds, but turned them into just 13 second-chance points. The Tigers did get outrebounded 48-39.
Martin was in the starting lineup along with O'Bryant, Mickey, Stringer and Hickey. . .Hickey scored eight of LSU's first 17 points, but sat out the last 15 minutes of the first half after getting two fouls. . .The Tigers shot 51 percent from the field (20-of-39) in the first half, including 64 percent (7-of-11) on 3-pointers. Martin, Hickey and Stringer each had two treys in the first half. . .Hickey had just one assist, but it tied him with coach Johnny Jones for 11th place on the LSU career rankings. Both Hickey and Jones have 271 assists. . .Stringer, who made three 3-pointers, moved past Ronnie Henderson into third place on the school's list. Stringer has 190 3-pointers. His four assists tied him with Jordy Hultberg for No. 15 on the school rankings. Both Stringer and Hultberg have 256 assists. After scoring 13 points, Stringer is No. 33 all-time for LSU with 1,094 points. He moved past Anthony Wilson. . .After scoring just five points in the past two games, Martin had 12 on Saturday. He made two treys which were as many as he had knocked down in the first eight games. . .Limited to 18 minutes due to foul trouble, Hickey had just eight points, the one assist and two steals. . .Hickey and Stringer were a combined 8-of-15 from the field, including 5-of-8 on 3-pointers. . .Coleman had five points and two rebounds in 16 minutes. . .Malik Morgan contributed three points and six rebounds in 18 minutes. . .Walk-on Henry Shortess knocked down a 3-pointer in the final minute. . .Frazier was the top scorer for UAB with 15 points. CJ Washington had 12 points and a game-high 10 rebounds. Fahro Alihodzic added 12 points and six boards. Rod Rucker, who was averaging 12 points per game, scored just seven. . .The 63 points matched the Blazers' lowest total of the season. . .LSU is 8-2, while UAB is 9-3. The paid attendance was 8,418. The actual crowd was around 4,600.
FROM THE LOCKERROOM
Coach Johnny Jones
"Our guys played from start to finish one of their more complete games. Anytime you go into Christmas break, that's when guys will check out a little bit earlier. Our guys did a nice job of punching the clock. They played very confident on both ends of the floor."
"Both Jarell and Tim played extremely well. Jarell came out and got out on the break quick. He got into a bit of a rhythm and knocked down some shots. When Hickey picked up his second foul, Tim came in and did an excellent job on the offensive end of the floor. On defense, he was able to help us because of his length. He didn't allow those guys to have great sight lines. That's a huge plus to have those two guys perform like that against a team of this caliber."
"UAB did a good job of shutting down our post players early. Our perimeter guys got us going. Andre and Hickey were able to knock down a shot. Jarell was able to step back and make a couple of shots because of the way they were playing us inside. That allowed for things to open up."
"UAB shot just 19 percent in the second half. That's a huge credit to our guys of what they did defensively. There were a lot of second-chance opportunities to be had by them. That's an area we have to clean up."
"I'm always trying to get guys like Andre and Hickey going by screening for them and getting them open looks. That's what was going on the first half. In the second half, I had a lot of one-on-one looks, so I just took advantage of it. Tim is so unselfish. You have to tell him sometimes to take a shot. He was a real patient guy today and that worked well for him."
"This game brought my confidence up a lot. It makes me want to bring more to the table on the offensive side. Guys were finding me open at the start of the game. My teammates did a good job of penetrating and finding the open guy. I just set my feet and knocked down some shots."
"It was good to see my teammates (freshmen) coming out and getting some attention also. I'm not that guy who likes to seek attention. It was good to see Jarell and Tim come out and have a good game."
LSU will play host to McNeese State next Saturday at the PMAC at 7 p.m. The Cowboys had a 2-8 record prior to their game at San Diego State on Saturday night. The LSU-McNeese game will be broadcast on CST.