8:00 PM ET, November 27, 2006
NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- After one of her best offensive games this season, LSU guard Erica White wanted to talk about playing defense.While harassing New Orleans with five steals, several deflections and general hustle, White added 15 points and six assists as LSU (No. 9 ESPN/USA Today, No. 11 AP) rolled to another lopsided victory by beating the Lady Privateers 65-45 on Monday night."I wanted to execute defensively first and foremost, try to get some deflections, get some steals," White said. "That's what kind of got me going."LSU (8-1) scored 24 points off 19 turnovers and held New Orleans (4-2) to 33.3 percent shooting. Lady Tigers coach Pokey Chatman said White was the main reason for that."Defensively, she set the tone," Chatman said. "She's got deflections, she's got steals, she's on the floor, she starts the break, she can rebound. She's 5-foot-4 and plays about 5-9 and that galvanizes everyone. ... She has the type of personality and ability to bring everyone with her."Sylvia Fowles had 17 points and 13 rebounds for LSU, which has won three straight and has not had a victory margin of less than 20 points this season.It was the latest dominant performance for the 6-foot-6 center known as Big Syl, who has four double-doubles this season and has scored in double figures in all but one game."When you face a player that is 6-6 and mobile like she is, it makes it very hard to defend," UNO coach Amy Champion said. "She is one of the best centers in the country. There's really not a whole lot you can do."Le'Della English scored 17 for UNO (4-2), and Cookie Johnson added 10 points.Shooting 50.9 percent, LSU led by as many as 26 points early in the second half.English and Johnson each made a pair of baskets in an 11-2 UNO run that got the Privateers as close as 46-29.But LSU pulled away again after Allison Hightower and White converted a pair of turnovers into fast-break baskets. White was fouled on her layup and hit the free throw to make it 51-29 with 12:17 remaining.LSU jumped out to a 7-0 lead in the first two minutes on White's two layups and RaShonta LeBlanc's 3-pointer.English, New Orleans' leading scorer, responded with a 3-pointer and a layup to cut the margin to 8-5. But the Privateers got no closer as White's scrappy play helped the Tigers surge to a double-digit lead they held the rest of the game.Drawing crowds of defenders with explosive drives to the hoop, White found open teammates for five assists to go with four steals and a pair of rebounds in the first 10 minutes. She set up Fowles for an easy layup with a no-look lob in from the perimeter, and her assist on Mesha Williams' basket put LSU ahead 26-11."I just try to get in there and be strong with the ball and find my teammates, and I was able to do that," White said.Consecutive layups by Fowles, who scored 14 in the opening half, widened LSU's lead to 32-15. White closed out the scoring in the first half with a pair of free throws that put the Tigers up 39-18.
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