BATON ROUGE, La. -- After taking a huge lead in the first half, the only suspense left for LSU (No. 15 ESPN/USA Today, No. 7 AP) and its fans was whether star Allison Hightower would eclipse the 1,000-point career mark.
Everyone seemed to know about the impending milestone -- except for Hightower.
"To tell the truth, I didn't know anything about it," said Hightower, who scored 15 points in LSU's easy 86-49 victory over Nicholls State. "I was confused. People were saying, 'Allison, shoot the ball. Why didn't you make that free throw?'
"I was wondering what was going on."
Hightower, who came into the game needing 14 points to become the 28th LSU player to score 1,000, reached the mark with 15:15 remaining on a pair of free throws. LSU coach Van Chancellor then called time out to allow Hightower to leave the game for good to an ovation.
"That was the only reason I started her in the second half," Chancellor said. "Anything she could mean to a program is what she means to us. She plays so hard everywhere. She's the best defensive player in the [SEC], maybe the country, a great rebounder and a great offensive player."
Playing their second game in two nights, the Lady Tigers (4-0) showed no signs of fatigue against the Colonels (0-3).
Actually, their effort was more pleasing to Chancellor than what he saw in Saturday's 18-point victory over Houston.
LSU scored the first 15 points before Nicholls State finally got on the board 5 minutes in. The Lady Tigers held the Colonels to 25 percent shooting from the field en route to a 46-15 halftime lead.
The LSU lead grew to as many as 42 points in the second half, though Nicholls State was able to narrow the gap at times against the Lady Tigers' reserves.
"We weren't too happy with them [Saturday]," Chancellor said. "I don't think they wanted to go through that again. We were much more aggressive."
Reserve guards Bianca Lutley and Adrianne Webb added 12 points each for LSU. All 13 active Lady Tigers saw action and all but three scored, as the LSU bench outscored Nicholls State's reserves 50-2.
"We knew we had to come out and give more effort," said Black, who had a career-high 10 points.
Black also had a game-high nine rebounds as LSU outboarded Nicholls State 48-23. The Lady Tigers shot 55.2 percent to 33.3 for the Colonels.
"I thought we should beat Nicholls State," Chancellor said candidly. "We did, and like I thought we should have."
Webb came off a career-high 17 point effort against Houston and definitely stated her case this weekend for more playing time, according to Chancellor.
"You have to be able to guard somebody, make shots and not turn the ball over," Chancellor said. "I've got to be able to trust her. I trust her like I trust anybody."
Nicholls State guard Ricshanda Bickham scored a game-high 23 points, 16 in the second half. Teammate Alisha Allen added 14.
"Playing against a team like LSU is such an enormous opportunity for us," Nicholls State coach DoBee Plaisance said. "The kids played hard, but what we'll use from this is being able to see what we need to work on."
The coach's daughter, Theresa Plaisance, will be playing for Chancellor next year.
"I'm grateful for the opportunity for my daughter to learn from Van," Plaisance said. "I feel very fortunate, but surreal might be the best way to describe this game."
The win was LSU's 29th straight against Louisiana schools. It's the Lady Tigers' first 4-0 start since the 2006-07 season.