Scores

Final

(24) LSU 54

(17-6, 7-5 SEC)

Vanderbilt 74

(17-6, 6-6 SEC)

    6:00 PM ET, February 21, 2004

    Memorial Gym, Nashville, Tennessee

    1 2 T
    #24LSU 28 2654
    VAN 22 5274

    Vandy holds LSU to 32 percent shooting

    NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- As well as Dawid Przybyszewski played offensively, Vanderbilt coach Kevin Stallings liked his defense even better.

    Przybyszewski was 5-for-5 on 3-pointers and scored 21 points. He also held LSU's Brandon Bass to 1-for-9 shooting as Vanderbilt defeated (No. 24 AP) LSU 74-54 on Saturday.

    Vanderbilt (17-6, 6-6 Southeastern Conference) also got 22 points from Matt Freije, and defensively held LSU to a season-low 32 percent shooting.

    LSU (17-6, 7-5) was playing without leading scorer and rebounder Jamie Lloreda, who aggravated lower leg injuries in an 80-68 loss to Auburn earlier in the week and did not dress Saturday.

    "Everyone will look at Dawid's 3-pointers, but he was better defensively than offensively," Stallings said. "Brandon Bass is a good player."

    Guarding Przybyszewski can prove as difficult as pronouncing his name (SHIB-a-shef-ski). The 7-foot-2 center has an excellent outside shot, and he added eight rebounds against LSU to go with his of 3-pointers.

    "I create a mismatch," said the Polish-born junior, who came into the game hitting 44 percent of his 3-point tries. "Big guys are not used to guarding on the three-point line. I think I can take full advantage of it."

    Freije's 22 points put him six away from being Vanderbilt's all-time leading scorer. He had a chance to break the mark with three minutes to play, but Stallings took him out of with Vanderbilt comfortably ahead. Freije said he was glad.

    "I want to break it in a classy way," he said. "I didn't want it to be when we are up 20 in garbage minutes. I want it to be in the middle of a game when it really counts."

    Antonio Hudson had 18 points and seven rebounds for the Tigers, who could not overcome the absence of Lloreda, who averages 17.2 points and 11.6 rebounds. Darrel Mitchell scored 12 points for LSU.

    "In retrospect, we shouldn't have played (Lloreda) against Auburn," said LSU coach John Brady. "He wanted to play tonight, but we wouldn't let him. I need to get our team healthy and get in the (SEC) tournament. With one ore win, we will have second place and secure one of the byes."

    The Commodores shot just 29 percent in the first half but hit 64 percent from the field in a 52-point second half. Vanderbilt also took excellent care of the ball, turning it over just six times.

    "We just couldn't stop them," Hudson said. "They were just hot, unbelievably hot."

    Vanderbilt opened the second half with an 18-5 run to take a 40-33 lead. Przybyszewski hit two 3s during the run and scored 10 of the points. "We couldn't let them throw the first punch in the second half," Freije said. "We came out and played more aggressive and we had some shots fall for us."

    Vanderbilt gradually pulled away from there. A dunk by Jason Holwerda gave the Commodores a 53-39 lead with 7:50 left, and their lead was never less than 14 points thereafter.

    LSU plays the league's two best teams, Mississippi State and Kentucky, next week.

    The victory lifted Vanderbilt to 14-1 at home this season.

    In pregame ceremonies, Vanderbilt retired the number of Perry Wallace, the first black basketball player in the Southeastern Conference.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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