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After busy Novembers, LSU, UT Arlington rested and ready

LSU and UT Arlington had hectic starts to their seasons.

Now they’ve had a chance to catch their breath before they meet in a nonconference game Friday night in Baton Rouge, La.

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The Tigers (6-1) played their first seven games in a span of 19 days, which included three games in the Cayman Islands Classic prior to Thanksgiving. They returned home to defeat Wofford 78-75 last Sunday, giving them a four-day break before the game against the Mavericks (4-4).

“It has really been a long 19 days,” LSU coach Matt McMahon said.

The Tigers shook off a disappointing 61-59 loss to Kansas State in the championship game in the Caymans to fight off a tough Wofford team in a game that featured eight ties and 19 lead changes.

LSU rallied after falling behind 73-68 with 3:40 remaining. Even after taking a three-point lead the Tigers had to withstand three Wofford attempts at tying 3-pointers in the final 12 seconds. Adam Miller (team-high 17.7 ppg) posted 26 points to lead LSU.

“On a day where I don’t think we played near our best, I thought our defense down the stretch was terrific,” McMahon said. “We were able to make enough plays to get the win.”

UTA was similarly busy — playing its first seven games in 17 days, a stretch that included three games in the Gulf Coast Showcase.

The Mavericks took advantage of Division III Howard Payne in a 99-41 win Monday, giving them three days off before facing the Tigers.

“We scheduled Howard Payne on a Monday night with the purpose of knowing that we would probably win the game, but we could blow some bad air out … rest some guys if we needed to rest them, and we were able to do all those things,” Mavericks coach Greg Young said.

“No easy ones left — that’s for sure. Fixing to go through a gauntlet for the last five in the nonconference.”

UTA plays North Texas, Texas State, San Francisco and Cal before beginning Western Athletic Conference play.

–Field Level Media

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