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Moultrie, No. 18 Mississippi State slip by LSU

Jan 26, 2012 - 7:00 AM Starkville, MS (Sports Network) - Arnett Moultrie had 28 points and 12 rebounds, helping No. 18 Mississippi State hang on for a 76-71 win over LSU on Wednesday.

Jalen Steele added 15 points for the Bulldogs (17-4, 4-2 SEC), who were coming off Saturday's overtime victory at Vanderbilt. Rodney Hood had 13 points and Dee Bost finished with nine points and 10 assists.

"We did not have our edge tonight, but you are not going to have your edge every night," said Mississippi State coach Rick Stansbury. "You have to survive even when you do not have the edge."

Andre Stringer scored 17 for the Tigers (12-8, 2-4). Anthony Hickey had 16 and helped erase a double-digit deficit in the closing minutes with several three- pointers, but he could not prevent the team's fourth loss in five games.

The Bulldogs led by 11 with four minutes to play and were up 68-59 when Hickey made things interesting. With less than two minutes left, Hickey came up with consecutive steals and knocked down a trey after each theft to pull the Tigers within three.

After Bost made a pair of free throws, LSU's Ralston Turner cut the deficit to two with a turnaround corner trey. Hood then hit two from the line, but Hickey responded with a pull-up, bank trey from the top of the key, making it 72-71 with 18 seconds left.

Hickey finally proved human after two Steele free throws, coughing the ball up amidst pressure from Moultrie and Bost. Moultrie, who leads the SEC with 12 double-doubles this season, made two from the charity stripe to seal the final result.

"He has a lot of courage, and down the stretch he was really good," LSU coach Trent Johnson said of Hickey.

LSU led by six late in the first half, but the Bulldogs closed on a 10-3 run to take a 32-31 lead into the break. They carried the momentum out of the locker room, opening the second with an 11-2 burst to establish a double-digit advantage. Moultrie had four points during the run, as did Hood, while Bost assisted on all four field goals.

Game Notes

LSU leads the all-time series, 104-96...Moultrie entered the game leading the SEC in rebounding (11.2 rpg)...Justin Hamilton, LSU's leading scorer, finished with 11 points. He entered Wednesday averaging 14.1 points per game.