NEW ORLEANS - Tulane guard Danielle Blagg had a three-point play with 1.6 seconds left to lift Tulane (3-0) to a 65-62 overtime victory over No. 20 LSU in women’s college basketball on Saturday night..
“We definitely were the underdogs,” said Blagg, a 5-foot-11 freshman forward who led all scorers with 22 points.
It was the first time Tulane (3-0) has ever defeated LSU on consecutive games between the teams. Tulane snapped LSU’s 33-game winning streak against in-state schools with a 54-52 victory in Baton Rouge last year.
It was also Tulane’s first win against LSU in Fogelman Arena since Dec. 31, 1999, when the Green Wave won 76-72.
Olivia Grayson, a 5-8 guard, scored all of her 21 points in the second half after first-half foul trouble.
“It’s just a big deal for us to win,” she said.
LSU was led by senior forward LaSondra Barrett, who scored 11 points, and Krystal Forthan added 10 points.
With the score tied at 62, Blagg was fouled by Forthan, but muscled the shot in the basket. Blagg then calmly hit a free throw for the final margin.
LSU’s Jeanne Kenney missed a long-distance desperation heave on a 3-pointer attempt to tie the score.
The game snapped LSU’s streak of 11 consecutive road game victories against Louisiana teams since a 76-72 loss at Tulane on Dec. 31, 2000.
LSU (2-1), which leads the all-time series 28-5, didn’t go away easily in its game against its biggest in-state rival.
The Tigers rallied from a 10-point deficit with 11:08 left to send the game into overtime.
Blagg, who was fouled by Kenney, hit one of three free throws to give the Green Wave a 58-57 lead with one minute left in regulation.
Kenney then had a chance to win the game, but she made one of two free throws, hitting the first and missing the second, to tie the score at 58 with 1.4 seconds left.
“Give Tulane a lot of credit, they made plays when they needed to,” LSU coach Nikki Caldwell said. “This is a game we will definitely learn from, and we will be better from it. We had some miscommunication at the end of the game, but games like this shouldn’t come down to one play. We can’t allow a team to out-rebound us on the road. We missed a lot of closeouts and missed a lot of our rotations (defensively).”
Trailing 62-60 in overtime, Forthan hit a jump shot to tie the score at 62 with 26 seconds left.
Then came Blagg’s heroics in the final seconds.
The Tigers started slowly, and the Green Wave was able to take advantage, making five of its first eight shots from the field on a 15-7 opening run.
Tulane increased its lead to 21-14 when Jamie Kaplan hit a 3-pointer.
But LSU answered with a 9-0 run, capped by Barrett’s two free throws, to give the Tigers a 22-21 lead.
The Green Wave led 26-23 at halftime. The Tigers (3-0) shot 39.3 percent from the field (11-of-28) in the first half, but used half-court and full-court pressure to force Tulane into 17 turnovers.
Grayson single-handedly had a 10-2 run at the beginning of the second half to give Tulane a 33-28 lead. She hit a 3-pointer from the top of the key to increase the Green Wave’s lead to 41-32 with 12:50 left in the second half.
“Grayson made some big baskets and had an unbelievable second half,” Caldwell said. “When you face players that are feeling good about their offensive game, defensively, we have to be able to accept that challenge of shutting them down. We didn’t tonight.”