BATON ROUGE, La. — Freshman Tremont Waters scored 27 points to help LSU beat Alcorn State 99-59 on Friday night in the season opener for both teams.
Waters made nine of his 13 field-goal attempts, including 4-of-6 3-pointers. Waters also had six assists, five steals and five rebounds.
The Tigers scored the first nine points and never trailed. A 13-0 run late in the first half made it 48-27 and LSU led by double figures the rest of the way.
“It was a lot of fun,” Waters said. “We came out and started off 9-0 and from there we just kept improving. We bumped up the lead and the crowd got into it. Ball movement was an emphasis tonight. We got the ball moving and we capitalized on that and made shots.”
Duop Reath and Wayde Sims each had 11 points for LSU and Brandon Sampson scored 10. The Tigers shot 61 percent from the field.
“In the second half, we did a better job of establishing the paint,” said first-year LSU coach Will Wade. “We did a nice job of valuing the ball and forcing some of their turnovers. Over the last ten days to two weeks, Tremont has just been phenomenal in practice. You never know how it’s going to be in a game.”
A.J. Mosby led Alcorn with 15 points. Reginal Johnson, the Braves’ top returning scorer, had 12 points. Johnson missed seven of his 12 field goal attempts.
“When a team comes out and shoots the ball the way LSU shot, it’s hard to get back in the game,” Alcorn coach Montez Robinson said. “LSU made shots when they had to make them. We didn’t play the way we wanted to play. We’re a lot better team than what was shown.”
LSU: Will Wade’s first game as Tigers coach was a huge success. LSU posted a 40-point victory in a season-opener for the first time in 11 years. The Tigers beat Nicholls State 96-42 in 2006.
Alcorn State: The Braves shot just 39 percent from the field. Alcorn State also committed 16 turnovers, which resulted in 24 points for LSU.
Led by Tremont Waters, the newcomers on the LSU roster had a productive opening night. The first-year Tigers players accounted for 58 points. Waters was the leader with 27 points to go along with his six assists and five steals. Junior college transfer Daryl Edwards and graduate transfer Jeremy Combs each had eight points. Freshmen Brandon Rachal and Galen Alexander had six points and five points, respectively. Graduate transfer Randy Onwuasor had four points. The six newcomers were a combined 20 of 33 from the field.
NO SUCCESS OUTSIDE SWAC
Alcorn State, which lost in the SWAC tournament title game last season, has not won a non-league game against a Division I school in five years. The Braves’ last such victory came against Samford, 69-65, in 2012. Alcorn State has not defeated a team from a Power Five conference in 27 seasons when it beat Indiana 79-77.
LSU will continue its season-opening two-game home stand against mid-major teams when Samford makes a visit Thursday.
Alcorn State will have a quick turnaround when it plays at Creighton on Sunday in the second of a five-game season-opening road trip.