LSU hoops survives scare from visiting LA Tech
BATON ROUGE - Ja'vonte Smart scored 16 points, and his late 3-pointer put No. 22 LSU ahead for good in a back-and-forth 74-67 victory over Louisiana Tech on Friday night.
The Bulldogs tied it at 62 on a jumper by Daquan Bracey with 2:29 remaining, but Smart hit his 3 on the next possession for the Tigers (4-0). LSU increased its lead to eight points on a layup by Kavell Bigby-Williams and three free throws by Skylar Mays.
Tremont Waters had 14 points for LSU, and Mays and Daryl Edwards each scored 12.
Anthony Duruji led the Bulldogs (3-1) with 22 points. Sophomore Exavian Christon matched his career high with 15 points and Amorie Archibald had 10.
Archibald's 3-pointer brought Louisiana Tech within 70-65 with 31 seconds remaining, but Waters and Edwards each hit a pair of free throws to seal the victory.
LSU led by as many as nine points in the first half, but Louisiana Tech closed within 36-33 at the break.
The Bulldogs took an eight-point lead with 12:39 remaining in the game. Duruji had nine points as Louisiana Tech outscored LSU 21-10 to start the second half. The Tigers responded with a 16-4 run to go ahead 62-58. Waters had five points during that stretch.
LSU: The Tigers were outrebounded and shot poorly from the free throw line and from 3-point range, but they found a way to improve to 4-0 for the first time in six seasons.
Louisiana Tech: The Bulldogs had their chance of coming away with a second impressive road victory in the first two weeks of the season. Louisiana Tech, which won at Wichita State in its season opener, scored only nine points in the final eight-plus minutes.
LSU will play away from home for the first time when it meets Charleston in a first-round game of the Advocare Invitational Tournament in Orlando, Florida, on Thursday.
Louisiana Tech returns home to play NAIA member Tougaloo on Tuesday.