Georgia basketball comeback falls short in season-ending SEC tourney loss to LSU

Georgia senior Braelen Bridges left his best on the floor on Wednesday night in the Bulldogs 72-67 loss to LSU in the SEC Men's Basketball Tournament in Nashville, Tenn.
Courtesy, Georgia athletics

Georgia basketball ran out of gas in Nashville with the Bulldogs falling 72-67 to LSU on the opening night of the SEC Men’s Basketball Tournament at Bridgestone Arena.

The Tigers scored the final five points in regulation to pull away for the victory in the tightly contested game.

“The message at halftime was we didn’t execute a lot of the stuff we talked about defensively,” Abdur-Rahim said. “We just weren’t playing hard, we didn’t come out with a lot of intensity.

“In the second half we got urgent, and shots started to fall. We dug ourselves deep into a hole (first half) by not playing with energy and intensity.”

Hill scored on a conventional three-point play with 1:33 left to tie the game at 67-67, LSU’s Shawn Phillips scored on a put-back basket with 1:09 left, and Williams hit a hook shot with 22 seconds left after Bridges missed a layup to make it a two-possession game.

Bridges and Hill scored 13 points each to lead the Bulldogs in scoring. Terry Roberts scored 12 points, Abdur-Rahim had 10, and Kario Oquendo scored all of his 10 points in the first half.

White indicated Oquendo, billed as the star of the team entering this season, had missed some block outs in the first half, leading to his minutes being limited in the second half.

“We had a group of five in there early second half that I thought were playing with a ton of energy,” White said. “We made a run, the guys in the game were playing better.

“We were much better defensively in the second half, so (it was) let’s ride this group.”.

LSU (14-18) advances to play No. 6-seed Vanderbilt at 9 p.m. on Thursday night.

The Tigers, led by KJ Williams’ 18 points, out-scored Georgia 25-4 on second-chance points to earn their way into the second round.

Georgia trailed by a 42-30 count at halftime, turning the ball over eight times while LSU had just one through the first 20 minutes.

It brings the season to an end for a Bulldogs team that failed to get a player among the 16 listed on the All-SEC first- and second-team units released earlier this week.

The Bulldogs have failed to win a game in the past three SEC Tournaments. Georgia lost to Vanderbilt last year 86-51, and in 2021, Missouri dealt the Bulldogs a 73-70 season-ending defeat.

In other SEC tournament action on Wednesday, Ole Miss beat South Carolina by a 67-61 in the opening game.

Thursday’s SEC tournament schedule:

1 p.m.: No. 9 seed Mississippi State vs. No. 8 seed Florida

3 p.m. No. 13 seed Ole Miss vs. No. 5 seed Tennessee

7 p.m. No. 10 seed Arkansas vs. No. 7 seed Auburn

9 p.m. No. 14 seed LSU vs. No. 6 seed Vanderbilt

Thursday byes: No. 1 seed Alabama, No. 2 seed Texas A&M, No. 3 seed Kentucky, No. 4 seed Missouri

UGA News

NextGeorgia basketball aims for deep SEC tourney run, ‘Crazier things …
Leave a Comment