Midway through the fourth quarter Jackson State had a double-digit lead and favored LSU on the ropes in Baton Rouge.
Jackson State, a 14-seed that had been battle-tested by SEC opponents in the regular season, led No. 3 seed 74-64 with 4:54 left in regulation. From that point, LSU went on a remarkable 19-3 run to win 83-77 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament on Saturday.
Jackson State was led by Miya Crump with 21 points and she was also 4-of-6 on 3-pointers Ameshya Williams-Holliday, the SWAC Player of the Year, added 15 points and 12 rebounds.
“Even though we didn’t get the win, we played good and played very hard,” Williams said.
LSU was led by Jailin Cherry who had a career-high 24 points and was 12-of-23 from the field. Khayla Pointer added 26 points and was 8-of-20 from the field, she also added eight assists and nine rebounds. Faustine Aifuwa had a double-double with 17 points and 14 rebounds.
LSU led by 13 points going into halftime at 41-28 and led as many as 17 points with 8:44 left to play in the third quarter.
JSU TIGERS take the lead!!!#MarchMadness x @ GoJSUTigersWBB pic.twitter.com/duQZDhSrjo
— NCAA March Madness (@MarchMadnessWBB) March 19, 2022
Jackson State was bidding to become the first 14-seed to win a women’s NCAA Tournament game against a No. 3 seed.
JSU had a historic season despite the late-game collapse. The program won the SWAC for the second consecutive season and had won 21-straight before its loss on Saturday. For what’s it worth, Jackson State — even in defeat — earned national respect.
But for Reed, coming close isn’t quite enough on the journey to prominence. She told her team so moments after a tough defeat.
“We have to fight for our institution. We have to fight for our conference,” said Reed. “We have to continue to fight for our culture. We have to continue to knock on walls to get respect. …it’s time to come back and knock the walls down.”
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