Vanderbilt falls to LSU in regular-season finale

Feb. 26, 2017

Box Score

NASHVILLE — The Vanderbilt women haven’t had much luck in Louisiana in recent years, and that didn’t change on Sunday.

Playing their regular-season finale at LSU, the Commodores were limited to 18 field goals and suffered a 64-58 loss to the Tigers.

Vanderbilt (14-15, 4-12), which came into the day having won three of its past four games, will be the No. 13 seed at next week’s SEC Tournament in Greenville, S.C., and will play a yet-to-be-determined opponent in the first round on Wednesday.

Rachel Bell scored a team-high 17 points in Sunday’s loss. Minta Spears added 13 points and nine rebounds for the Commodores, who have now dropped seven straight games on LSU’s home floor. Vanderbilt hasn’t earned a victory at the Maravich Center since Feb. 19, 2004.

Alexis Hyder and Raigyne Moncrief had 17 points apiece for the Tigers (19-10, 8-8), and Chloe Jackson added 15.

Vanderbilt finished 18-of-43 from the floor, including 8-of-23 from 3-point range.

LSU closed the third quarter with an 11-3 run to flip a 36-33 deficit into a 44-40 lead, and the Tigers stayed in front throughout the final 10 minutes, never allowing Vanderbilt to get closer than four points. The Commodores had a chance to narrow the gap to three with 37 seconds to play, but Spears — one of VU’s best free throw shooters — missed the back end of a two-shot foul.

Trailing 31-27 at the half, the Commodores opened the second half with a 9-2 run. Kaleigh Clemons-Green hit a 3-pointer from the corner that gave the Commodores their first lead of the game, 34-33, with 6:30 to play in the third quarter, and Bell followed that with a pair of free throws to push the lead to 36-33.

But LSU answered back quickly with an 8-2 run to move back in front, 41-36, and the Tigers owned a 44-40 edge at the end of the third quarter.

The Commodores fell behind 22-11 early in the second quarter before putting together a 14-6 run to trim the deficit to 28-25. Spears ignited the surge with a 3-pointer, and Whalen capped it with another. Bell scored six points during the run and had 11 first-half points for the Commodores.

LSU eventually carried a 31-27 lead into the locker room. Alexis Hyder and Raigyne Moncrief scored eight points each for the Tigers in the first 20 minutes.

Vanderbilt trailed 17-9 at the end of the first period, with all of the Commodores’ points coming from behind the 3-point line after Whalen, Bell and Spears each knocked down a 3-pointers. Seven of Vanderbilt’s nine field-goal attempts in the opening 10 minutes came rom long range.