With a bruising two-game East Coast road trip behind them and the start of Southeastern Conference play looming next week, an otherwise undistinguished nonconference game Monday becomes crucial for the LSU Lady Tigers.

LSU wraps up the year and the pre-SEC slate against Samford. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. at the Pete Maravich Assembly Center.

The game can be seen on SEC Network+ via WatchESPN and the WatchESPN app, and heard locally on WBRP-FM 107.3 and in the Geaux Zone at LSUSports.net.

The Lady Tigers dropped to 6-6 overall with losses in a pre-Christmas road trip to Rutgers (69-57) and against No. 1-ranked Connecticut (86-40) in Hartford. They open SEC play Sunday at Alabama, a game LSU would certainly like to go into with a plus-.500 record.

Sophomore guard Jenna Deemer and junior forward Alexis Hyder lead LSU in scoring with 10.7 and 10.4 points per game, respectively.

Deemer is knocking down 40.7-percent of her 3-point shots and has made 24 of LSU’s 31 baskets from beyond the arc this season. Hyder leads the Lady Tigers 8.2 rebounds per game, including a team-high 12 at UConn.

Samford is 7-6, coming off a 61-41 loss Dec. 21 at UAB. Forward Destiney Elliott leads the Bulldogs with 8.9 points and 8.3 rebounds per contest.

This will be only the second game ever between LSU and Samford. The Lady Tigers rolled to an 86-38 victory to open the 2007-08 season, their first game under then-coach Van Chancellor, as part of the Preseason WNIT.

This year’s game is part of LSU’s Deal of the Week promotion. Fans can purchase $1 general admission tickets by logging on at LSUtix.net and entering promo code DOTW at checkout.

Follow Scott Rabalais on Twitter, @RabalaisAdv.