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No. 21 LSU stays hot, topples No. 18 Tennessee

Sportsnaut
Jan 8, 2022; Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA;   Tennessee Volunteers forward Olivier Nkamhoua (13) is fouled by LSU Tigers forward Darius Days (4) during the fist half at Pete Maravich Assembly Center. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 8, 2022; Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA; Tennessee Volunteers forward Olivier Nkamhoua (13) is fouled by LSU Tigers forward Darius Days (4) during the fist half at Pete Maravich Assembly Center. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Tari Eason had 24 points and 12 rebounds as No. 21 LSU defeated No. 18 Tennessee 79-67 in an SEC game Saturday in Baton Rouge, La.

Darius Days added 15 points and Brandon Murray scored 13 as the Tigers (14-1, 2-1 SEC) beat a ranked team for the second consecutive. They defeated No. 16 Kentucky on Tuesday.

Kennedy Chandler scored 19, Santiago Vescovi added 14 and Uros Plavsic had 12 to lead the Volunteers (10-4, 1-2).

Vescovi’s 3-pointer started the second-half scoring and cut the Tigers’ lead to 42-38.

Eason scored four points as LSU expanded the lead to 49-38.

The Volunteers twice got within nine points before Eason scored five and Days scored four as the Tigers extended the lead to 62-42.

Plavsic made three free throws for Tennessee, but Days responded with a tip-in.

The Volunteers chipped away and Olivier Nkamhoua’s layup pulled them within 65-53. Tennessee got within 11 points before Eason got loose for a dunk.

Plavsic made two dunks as the Volunteers closed within nine, but Eason answered with a layup.

Chandler made 3 of 5 free throws to trim the lead to 71-63 with four minutes remaining.

Moments later Tigers starting point guard Xavier Pinson suffered a right leg injury and had to be helped to the locker room. He would return to the bench.

Vescovi made a 3-pointer to get Tennessee within five points with three minutes remaining.

Eric Gaines made a steal and fed Murray for a layup, and Murray fed Eason for a dunk to put LSU in control with a 75-66 with 1:13 left.

Josiah-Jordan James and Vescovi each made a 3-pointer as the Volunteers took an early 9-3 lead.

Murray’s 3-pointer started a 21-6 run that gave the Tigers a 24-15 lead.

Chandler scored three straight points for Tennessee before Eason’s jumper gave LSU a 30-20 lead.

The Volunteers twice pulled within four points before the Tigers rebuilt the lead to nine.

Chandler made a layup to pull Tennessee within 42-35 at halftime.

–Field Level Media