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LSU (18-11) vs. Georgia (15-16)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Thursday, March 14, 1 p.m. (et)

FACTS & STATS: Site: Bridgestone Arena (20,000) -- Nashville, Tennessee. Television: SEC Network, ESPN3.com. Home Record: LSU 14-3, Georgia 12-6. Away Record: LSU 4-8, Georgia 3-8. Neutral Record: LSU 0-0, Georgia 0-2. Conference Record: LSU 9-9, Georgia 9-9. Series Record: LSU leads, 61-42.

GAME NOTES: The ninth-seeded LSU Tigers and the eighth-seeded Georgia Bulldogs open up second-round action of the 2013 SEC Tournament at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville on Thursday afternoon.

The winner will advance to Friday's quarterfinals to play top-seeded Florida.

In Johnny Jones' first season as head coach after a decade at the helm of North Texas, LSU has had a solid season, going 18-11 overall and finishing the SEC campaign at 9-9. The Tigers slipped up a bit coming into the tournament, with losses in two of their last three games, including an 81-67 home setback versus Ole Miss last Saturday.

Georgia (15-16) also exceeded expectations in the SEC, going 9-9 for just its third season at .500 or better in the league in the past 10 years. The Bulldogs had been winners of three of four heading into their regular-season finale at Alabama, but they fell victim to a miraculous game-winning shot from beyond half-court to lose to the Crimson Tide, 61-58.

After 103 all-time meetings, LSU leads Georgia by a 61-42 count, although the Bulldogs won the lone matchup this season, 67-58, in Athens on Jan. 19.

LSU came out flat on its senior day last weekend, getting outshot by Ole Miss from the field, 52.5 percent to 41.1 percent, in the 14-point loss. Andre Stringer was impressive along the perimeter for the Tigers, shooting 4-of-8 from 3-point range for 18 points. Johnny O'Bryant III tallied his 14th double- double of the season with 17 points and 12 rebounds, while Anthony Hickey netted 10 points. On the season, the Tigers have one of the more balanced offenses in the SEC, pouring in 71.3 ppg with five players scoring in double figures on a nightly basis. O'Bryant III mans the paint with 13.8 ppg and 8.8 rpg, while Hickey (11.8 ppg, 3.8 apg) is an elite perimeter defender with a Division I-best 3.1 spg. Charles Carmouche (10.8 ppg), Stringer (10.3 ppg) and Shavon Coleman (10.2 ppg, 6.1 rpg) round out a potent attack.

Georgia appeared to be down for the count against Alabama in the regular- season finale, as it trailed by as many as 17 points before climbing all the way back to tie the contest at 58-58 in the final minute on a Kentavious Caldwell-Pope 3-pointer, but the Tide responded with a miracle heave from Trevor Releford at the buzzer as the Bulldogs were saddled with the heart- breaking loss. Caldwell-Pope poured in 14 points in the setback, as did Nemanja Djurisic from off the bench. Brandon Morris (11 points) was also impressive in a reserve role. UGA is led by the efforts of super-sophomore Caldwell-Pope, who registers 18.0 ppg, 6.9 rpg and 2.1 spg and was named the SEC Player of the Year. The team has difficulty putting up points elsewhere however, as it nets a lowly 60.7 ppg and Djurisic is the next-best scoring option with only 8.1 ppg. Luckily for the Bulldogs, they play outstanding defense, allowing just 61.4 ppg.

Something's got to give in this battle of offense versus defense, but the LSU shooting attack has seen a significant drop-off away from Baton Rouge. With its stout defense and Caldwell-Pope being the "x-factor", Georgia should find a way to advance.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Georgia 66, LSU 64

03/14 10:51:14 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
NCSU 24
GASO 23
3rd
DUKE 38
ELON 6
 
3rd
UNC 21
LBRTY 22
 
8th
NOR 2
DUR 1
 
1st
ECU 0
NCCU 7
 
Final
TOR 2
NYY 0
Final
CWS 6
DET 3
Final
STL 1
CHC 5
Final
PIT 3
CIN 2
4th
BAL 0
MIN 0
 
4th
TAM 3
BOS 0
 
4th
KAN 0
CLE 0
 
4th
CWS 0
DET 5
 
5th
ATL 0
MIA 3
 
6th
NYM 0
PHI 1
 
5th
HOU 0
TEX 0
 
1st
ARI 0
COL 0
 
1st
STL 0
CHC 1
 
8:40pm Tonight
SDP
LOS
9:05pm Tonight
SFG
MIL
9:05pm Tonight
ANA
OAK
9:10pm Tonight
SEA
WAS
Final
MICH 52
APPST 14
Final
NAVY 17
OSU 34
Final
UAB 48
TROY 10
Final
UVA 20
UCLA 28
Final
PURD 43
WMICH 34
Final
NCSU 24
GASO 23
Final
UMASS 7
BC 30
Final
NW 24
CAL 31
Final
NEB 55
FATL 7
Final
UMO 27
MARS 42
 
Final
ND 48
RICE 17
Final
MIZZ 38
SDST 18
Final
ALA 33
WVU 23
4th
AUB 38
ARK 21
 
Final
STAN 45
UCD 0
3rd
UGA 24
CLEM 21
 
3rd
UNC 21
LBRTY 22
 
4th
KSU 7
OHIO 14
 
2nd
OKLA 24
LATU 0
 
2nd
KST 21
SAUST 7
 
2nd
USC 21
FRES 0
 
2nd
MSST 7
SMISS 0
 
1st
OKST 0
FSU 3
 
1st
TEX 0
UNT 0
 
1st
NMU 0
UTEP 7
 
8:05pm Tonight
UF 0
IDAHO 0
9:00pm Tonight
LSU
WISC
10:30pm Tonight
OREG
SD
10:30pm Tonight
HAW
WASH
3rd
DUKE 38
ELON 6
 
1st
ECU 0
NCCU 7
 
8th
NOR 2
DUR 1