BATON ROUGE, La. – Freshman Ceira Ricketts led the Arkansas Razorback women’s basketball team with 11 points, but the LSU Tigers came away with the win, 68-53, at the Pete Maravich Assembly Center.
Ricketts scored nine in the first half, but was shut down by the LSU defense in the second half until the 5:11 mark of the second half.
Meanwhile, LSU’s Kristen Morris turned up her offense in the second half, finishing with 20 points to lead all scorers.
The Razorbacks drop to 12-11 on the season, 1-7 in league games. LSU moves to 5-3 in SEC play, 12-8 overall.
Junior Charity Ford added 10 points for the Razorbacks coming off the bench.
Runs to start each half gave LSU leads that Arkansas overcame in the first half, but could not come back in the second.
A three-point halftime lead slowly expanded for LSU to 12 points by the 13 minute mark of the second half thanks to a 13-4 run by the Tigers to lead 48-36. LSU led by as many as 14 before pushing out to the final margin of 15.
“It was a game of two contrasting halves,” UA head coach Tom Collen said. “In the first half they struggled to defend our offense the way that they wanted to but they made the adjustment and we couldn’t counter.”
For the third straight game, Arkansas outrebounded its opponent, 34-30, but suffered with ball control problems. LSU had only seven turnovers, a season low for mistakes, and coupled it with shooting 50% from the field. Arkansas hit only 38% and unfortunately doubled LSU in turnovers with 14.
“We outrebounded them, but when you look at the individual stats, we only had three offensive rebounds,” Collen said. “We need those offensive rebounds to give us more possessions, especially on a night where we had a hard time shooting.”
The Lady Tigers went on a 9-0 run from the tipoff to take control of the game early. The Razorbacks erased most of the deficit with key points from Brereton and Ricketts, closing with an 8-0 run to pull to within a point, 16-15, with 11:13 left.
The teams traded points until Ford’s free throw line jumper tied the game at 19-19. Ashley Daniel’s two free throws gave Arkansas its first lead, 28-27, with four minutes left in the half.
Ford’s three-pointer with 2:01 made it 31-29, but a 6-0 run by the Tigers capped by a floating layup by Hightower sent LSU to halftime with the lead, 35-32.
Three Lady Tigers were in double digits were led by Morris. Like Morris, Latear Eason had a career high, putting up 16 for LSU. Allison Hightower also scored 15 points each.
Arkansas remains on the road to face Georgia on Sunday, Feb. 8, at 1:30 p.m. in Athens, Ga.