March 14, 2009

LSU beaten at SEC semifinals

Jarvis Varnado scored a team-high 19 points Saturday, helping Mississippi State upset 16th-ranked LSU 67-57 in one SEC Tournament semifinal in Tampa, Fla.

MSU took a 31-29 lead into the locker room, then won the second half scoring battle by a 36-28 margin.

A 10-0 run, led by Barry Stewart (17 points), gave the winners a 63-47 cushion with 2:37 remaining.

LSU hurt its chances by shooting a season-low 31 percent, and sank only 4-of-16 3-point attempts.

In a balanced attack, Phil Turner, Ravern Johnson and Dee Bost each scored six points. Varnado added seven rebounds and seven blocked shots for the Bulldogs (22-12), who will attempt to win the crown Sunday for the first time since the in 2002-03 season.

Tasmin Mitchell's 15 points and five rebounds led LSU.

Marcus Thornton scored 14 with six rebounds, and Garrett Temple scored seven with seven rebounds and three blocked shots for the Tigers (26-7), who have not won the event since 1980.