Mississippi State edges LSU on free throws 58-57

By The Associated Press

BATON ROUGE, La. — Dee Bost made two free throws just inside the 2-minute mark to give Mississippi State a 58-57 Southeastern Conference victory against LSU on Saturday.

Andre Stringer broke the 14th tie of the game with a 3-pointer to put LSU in front 57-54 with 3:21 left. Mississippi State moved ahead on a putback basket by Kodi Augustus and two free throws by Bost.

The Tigers never got a shot off after Bost’s two foul shots with 1:59 left. One LSU possession ended with a turnover by Ralston Turner. After a steal by Stringer, the Tigers’ Malcolm White committed a turnover.

LSU (10-13, 2-6) had one final chance after White rebounded a missed shot by Bost with 10 seconds remaining. Once again, the Tigers never got a shot up as Bost stripped the ball from Stringer as he was going into his shooting motion.

Renardo Sidney led the Bulldogs (12-10, 4-4) with 16 points and 11 rebounds. Riley Benock added 12 points, while Augustus had 10. Bost finished with only nine points, half of his 18-point average. Mississippi State played without Ravern Johnson, a 17.7-point scorer, who was suspended Friday.

Stringer was the leading scorer for LSU with 15 points. Aaron Dotson contributed 10 points for the Tigers, who lost their sixth game in a row.

LSU took a three-point advantage into halftime on the strength of a 7-0 run. Mississippi State broke a 26-26 tie on a 3-pointer by Benock with 3:30 remaining in the half. Baskets by Turner and Dotson put the Tigers in front by one point.

Eddie Ludwig then sank three free throws after being fouled on a 3-point attempt late in the shot clock. Bost made one of two free throws with five seconds remaining to leave the Bulldogs behind 33-30 at halftime.

LSU’s biggest lead in the opening half was six points at 17-11 after Turner connected on a 3-pointer with 12:54 left. Mississippi State then outscored the Tigers 13-2 to take its largest advantage at five points.

Eight of those 13 Bulldogs points came from reserves — 3-pointers by Shaun Smith and Jalen Steele and a field goal by Brian Bryant. A 3-pointer by Benock gave Mississippi State a 24-19 lead with 7:49 remaining in the half.

It took the Bulldogs slightly more than two minutes into the second half to go out in front. A three-point play by Sidney tied the score at 33. A 3-pointer by Bost gave Mississippi State a 37-35 lead with 17:56 remaining. The game remained extremely close over the next 14 minutes. Neither team had more than a two-point lead during that stretch. The score was tied eight times over that span.

Click here for more at Brad Locke’s Inside Mississippi State sports blog.