The sleeve wrapped round Raigyne Moncrief’s left knee hardly tells the story of what she’s been through the past seven months.
Moncrief tore her left ACL and injured two other knee ligaments March 23 during the LSU Lady Tigers’ first-round NCAA tournament victory over Georgia Tech.
It’s been a long road back, but Moncrief is nearly full speed in practice. And according to team trainer Micki Collins, she should be able to see at least some action in LSU’s Nov. 14 season opener against Arkansas-Little Rock.
“That’s my goal,” Moncrief said. “I feel good.”
The Fort Lauderdale native averaged 10.1 points last season to make the Southeastern Conference All-Freshman team and be named the Louisiana Sports Writers Association freshman of the year.
LSU successfully bid to host NCAA tournament first- and second-round games during Nikki Caldwell’s first three seasons here. But this season, if the Lady Tigers want to host, they will have to earn it.
For the 2015 tournament, the top four seeds in the four regionals will be allowed to host. That gives the Lady Tigers a clearly defined goal if they want to avoid going on the road.
“It’s early, but it’s never too early to be planning to be one of the top teams in the country and to host,” Caldwell said. “We know how we play in the PMAC in the postseason, and to have our fans come support us. It’s very difficult for an opponent to walk in here and beat (us).”
LSU won a first-round game at home in 2012 and advanced from the Pete Maravich Assembly Center with two wins each of the past two seasons to reach the Sweet 16.
LSU has two transfers who are eligible to play this season: guard/forward Akilah Bethel from West Virginia and forward Ann Jones from Memphis. This year’s transfer, forward Alexis Hyder from North Texas, must sit out the 2014-15 season but can practice with the team. … LSU has only one Louisiana player on the roster: freshman guard Jenna Deemer from Ursuline Academy in New Orleans. … Season tickets ($75) are available at the LSU Athletic Ticket Office, by phone at (800) 960-8587 or (225) 578-2184, or online at LSUTix.net.
Follow Scott Rabalais on Twitter: @RabalaisAdv.