for this game

LSU takes control against Connecticut

Jan 7, 2007 - 6:46 AM BATON ROUGE, Louisiana (Ticker) -- Glen Davis and Louisiana State waited almost a year to get even with Connecticut.

Davis and Tasmin Mitchell scored 16 points apiece to lead the No. 19 Tigers to a 66-49 victory over the No. 14 Huskies.

LSU (11-3) held Connecticut to just 25 points in the final 25 minutes, avenging a 67-66 loss at Connecticut on January 7, 2006.

One play by Davis in the second half typified the difference between the teams. With the Huskies struggling to stay close, the 6-9, 290-pounder wrestled a rebound away along the baseline, dribbled back toward the lane and powered between a pair of defenders for a basket. He converted the foul shot for a 49-38 lead with 7:01 to play.

"Physically, they are very tough," UConn coach Jim Calhoun said. "It was the most physical team we have played all year. Somewhere in the midst of that game someone was going to stand up and someone was not going to stand up. They did a terrific job of standing up and winning the basketball game."

The Tigers withstood an opening 7-0 flurry by the Huskies (12-2) and still trailed by eight points before closing the first half with a 14-4 run to take a 30-28 halftime lead on Tack Minor's 35-footer at the buzzer.

"I had been making shots like that at practice before the buzzer goes off," Minor said. "I just shot like I have been at practice and it went in."

"Obviously we didn't start the game as well as we would have liked but we got ourselves going and everybody contributed," LSU coach John Brady said. "We got Glen involved more in the second half and Garrett (Temple) made some timely baskets. Tasmin Mitchell really played a tough game. I was also proud of Tack coming in and giving us some positive minutes."

The young Huskies, with five sophomores and eight freshmen on the roster, simply unraveled in the second half.

UConn made just seven field goals after intermission and finished with just four assists against 19 turnovers. With three minutes to play, the Huskies had zero assists and 10 turnovers in the second half.

"Their defense and their will. It's simple," Calhoun said. "That led to four assists. I'll be scratching my head I'm sure all the way back to Connecticut. Their defense was very good."

If that wasn't bad enough, the Huskies were a dreadful 11-of-24 at the free-throw line in falling to 0-2 on the road. UConn won its first 11 games at home before losing at West Virginia last Saturday.

Temple added 14 points and Mitchell hauled in 10 rebounds for LSU, which won its fifth straight game overall and seventh in a row at home.

"Basically the coaching staff told us that we needed to get our hands on the offensive rebounds and the defensive rebounds," Mitchell said. "We needed to get on some loose balls. We needed to hustle harder than them because they are a hustling team. If we matched their hustle or hustled harder than them, then we would come out with the victory."