Published: April 22, 2008, 12:00 AM (CT)
Updated: April 17, 2012, 11:17 AM (CT)
by LSUsports.net (@LSUsports), LSU Sports Interactive
2008 Women's Final Four
First Round (Baton Rouge, La.)
LSU Completes the Drive For Five to Reach Fifth Straight Final Four
Under first-year and Hall of Fame head coach Van Chancellor, LSU was seeking its fifth straight appearance in the Final Four, and with the leadership of eight seniors to guide the team, a run to the promise land seemed inevitable.
Chancellor guided the team to a 31-6 overall record, the program’s fourth straight season with 30 or more wins, and an undefeated regular season record in the Southeastern Conference at 14-0.
After reaching the SEC Tournament championship game for the fourth consecutive season, the Lady Tigers were awarded the No. 2 seed in the New Orleans Region.
For the first time since 2004, LSU hosted the first and second rounds of the NCAA Tournament, and the Lady Tigers had little trouble advancing to New Orleans.
In the first round against Jackson State, LSU’s smothering defense held Jackson State to 32 points, the second lowest total of the season.
The Lady Tigers also recorded 15 steals against Jackson State, the highest total of the season. All-American Sylvia Fowles led LSU in three statistical categories with 16 points, seven rebounds and six steals in the 66-32 LSU victory.
LSU faced seventh-seeded Marist in the second round, and the Red Foxes entered the game with an impressive 32-2 record. In what proved to be the final game in the Pete Maravich Assembly Center for LSU’s eight seniors, the Lady Tigers ran past Marist in the second half to win 68-49 after leading the Red Foxes by two at halftime, 29-27.
Fowles recorded a double double with 19 points and 13 rebounds while Erica White poured in 15 points, swiped four steals and dished out four assists.
For the Sweet 16, LSU traveled an hour down the road to New Orleans to take on third-seeded Oklahoma State, and the Cowgirls were no match for the Lady Tigers who advanced to the Elite Eight with a 67-52 triumph.
Once again, LSU’s top-ranked defense shut down the opposition as Oklahoma State only managed to shoot 27.5 percent from the field on 19-of-69 shooting.
Four Lady Tigers scored in double figures, led by White who finished with a season-high 18 points while also dishing out four assists and picking up four steals.
In the Elite Eight against top-seeded North Carolina, LSU used stout defense and a steady offense to slip past the Tar Heels 56-50 to advance to its fifth straight Final Four, tying Connecticut as the only two programs to accomplish that feat.
Fowles was named the New Orleans Region’s Most Outstanding Player after finishing with 21 points, 12 rebounds and five blocked shots. Quianna Chaney also scored in double figures for the Lady Tigers as she contributed 13 points to go along with four assists to help LSU complete its “Drive for Five.”
The Final Four in Tampa, Fla., at the St. Pete Times Forum marked the third time on the season LSU faced Tennessee, and the defending national champions snatched victory from the Lady Tigers with a last-second putback to win 47-46, ending the magnificent careers of LSU’s eight seniors.
|2007 Women's Final Four
(No. 3 Seed, Fresno Region)
First Round (Austin, Texas)
Four Final Fours in as many seasons for the Lady Tigers
Acting head coach Bob Starkey was faced with the daunting task of guiding LSU Lady Tigers into the 2007 NCAA Tournament after closing out the regular season with three losses in the final five games, but guide he did.
After a nice run in the Southeastern Conference Tournament and a loss to Vanderbilt in the title game, LSU received a No. 3 seed in the NCAA Tournament and were placed in the Fresno Regional
The road to Cleveland’s Quicken Loans Arena would begin in Austin, Texas at the University of Texas’ Erwin Center. First up for the Lady Tigers was Big South Conference champion UNC Ashville in the first round.
LSU made quick work of the Bulldogs with a 77-39 victory. The Lady Tigers jumped out to a 17-7 lead and led 39-19 at the break.
Quianna Chaney and RaShonta LeBlanc carried LSU with 15 points each and combined to hit nine three-pointers in the game. Erica White added 10 points and seven assists, while Sylvia Fowles had eight points and 10 rebounds.
Up next was upset minded West Virginia, the No. 11 seed. The Mountaineers upset six-seeded Xavier in the first round and seemed ready for the Lady Tigers.
LSU had to rally from 11 points down in the final 12 minutes of play to secure a 49-43 victory.
The Lady Tigers build a 10-point first-half lead, but the WVU charged back and trailed 21-18 at the break. The Mountaineers used a 20-3 run over the end of the first half and the start of the second to build a 35-24 lead with just over 12 minutes left on the clock, but LSU responded with a 12-0 run to retake the lead for good and hold on for a 49-43 win.
Fowles led the way with 21 points and 13 rebounds, while Chaney added 11 points.
The come-from-behind victory over WVU advanced LSU into the Sweet 16 and a trip to Fresno, Calif., and a date with No. 10 seed Florida State at Fresno State’s Save Mart Center.
The Lady Tigers had little trouble with Florida State in a 55-43 victory. LSU led the entire game and held a 27-18 lead at halftime before breaking it open with a 10-0 to open the second half.
Chaney led LSU with 22 points and Fowles added 20 points and nine rebounds.
In the Elite Eight, The Lady Tigers would face top-seeded Connecticut with a chance to avenge an earlier one-point loss at home.
LSU did just that and did it in convincing fashion with a 73-50 win over the Huskies in the Fresno Regional Final.
Fowles continued her dominance in the tournament with 23 points, 15 rebounds and six blocked shot on her way to being named Regional Most Outstanding Player. Allison Hightower and Ashley Thomas added 12 points each and White posted 11 points in the victory.
A disappointing outing versus Greensboro Regional Champion Rutgers in the national semifinal in Cleveland ended LSU’s season, but the Lady Tigers could not hang their heads after a 30-8 season, the program’s third straight 30-win season.
2006 Women's Final Four
First Round (Nashville, Tenn.)
Three Straight Final Four appearances for Lady Tigers
After reaching the Final Four in 2004 and 2005, LSU would settle for nothing less than a return trip to the grandest spectacle in women's basketball.
Second-year head coach Pokey Chatman guided the Lady Tigers to a 31-4 overall record, including the program's second-straight Southeastern Conference regular season title with a 13-1 mark.
LSU took its momentum from the regular season and rode it to a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament for the second-straight season and the third time in four years. The Lady Tigers were placed in the San Antonio Region and made the first stop in Nashville, Tenn., for the first- and second-round games.
No. 16 seed Florida Atlantic awaited LSU at Vanderbilt's Memorial Gymnasium. The Lady Tigers used a 20-0 run midway through the first half and pull away with a 72-48 victory to advance to the second round to face No. 9 seed Washington.
The Huskies upset eighth-seeded Minnesota in the opening round and were playing well.
Washington was, in fact, playing so well that they led LSU, 26-23, at the end of the first half. The lead would not last long as the Lady Tigers shot out to a 12-2 run to open the half and never looked back to earn a 72-49 victory and a trip to the "Sweet 16" in San Antonio.
National Player of the Year Seimone Augustus averaged 24.0 points in the first two games for LSU, while Sylvia Fowles averaged 12.5 points and 5.0 rebounds in the opening rounds.
Fourth-seeded DePaul was next for LSU. The Blue Demons gave a good fight in the opening 20 minutes and found themselves deadlocked at 31-31 with the Lady Tigers at the break. Another Lady Tigers' run to open the second half and LSU pulled way from DePaul for a 66-56 victory.
No. 3 seed Stanford upset second-seeded Oklahoma in the other regional semifinal to set up an LSU-Stanford showdown for the right to advance to Boston.
The teams did not disappoint. A showdown ensued.
The game featured 15 lead changes, as neither team led by more than seven points. Stanford led 28-23 at halftime, but LSU battled back to take a six-point lead midway through the half. The Cardinal then retook a 55-54 lead with four minutes left in the game before LSU posted six straight points to hold a 60-55 advantage with 2:07 remaining.
Just over a minute later, Stanford's Candice Wiggins nailed a three-pointer to cut the lead to 60-59, but Augustus hit a couple of free throws and drew a charging foul on the defensive end to seal a 62-59 victory for LSU.
Augustus earned regional Most Outstanding Player honors after posting 18 points against DePaul and 26 in the win over Stanford. Fowles was named to the All-tournament team by averaging 12.0 points and 18.0 rebounds in the two wins, including setting LSU's NCAA Tournament single game record with 19 rebounds against the Blue Demons.
In Boston, Duke, the No. 1 seed from the Bridgeport Region, controlled the game from the start and handed LSU a 64-45 loss in the National Semifinal game in the TD Banknorth Garden.
2005 Women's Final Four
First Round (Knoxville, Tenn.)
Lady Tigers Make it Back-to-Back Trips
After not advancing to the NCAA Final Four in the history of the program, the LSU Lady Tigers made it two straight trips with a visit in 2005.
First year head coach Pokey Chatman, who had guided LSU to the Final Four in her hometown of New Orleans as acting head coach in 2004, led the Lady Tigers back to the promise land.
Chatman and the Lady Tigers enjoyed one of the best seasons in school history, posting 33-3 overall record and claiming the program’s first Southeastern Conference regular season title with a perfect 14-0 mark.
But, the success did not end in the regular season. LSU received a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament and were placed in the Chattanooga Region.
The first stop for the Lady Tigers was Knoxville, Tenn., where No. 16 Stetson awaited. LSU took care of business in convincing fashion, posting a 70-36 victory. National Player of the Year Seimone Augustus scored 14 points, while National Point Guard of the Year Temeka Johnson had 15 points and seven assists.
No. 9 seed Arizona was the next victim as LSU advanced to the Sweet 16. The Lady Tigers continued its domination on defense in a 76-43 victory. For the second straight game the opposition shot below 30.0 percent from the floor.
Augustus led the way with 18 points and eight rebounds, while Johnson added 14 points and 10 rebounds.
Upset minded Liberty, the No. 13 seed, awaited LSU in Chattanooga for the Regional Semifinal. Defense again dominated the story line as the Lady Tigers defeated the Flames 90-48. LSU led 46-16 at the break and were led against by Augustus with 22 points. Scholanda Hoston also had 22 points, while Johnson added 12 points and 15 assists.
The Duke Blue Devils, the No. 2 seed, now stood between LSU and a return trip to the Final Four.
Duke jumped out to an early led and led for all but a few second of the first half until LSU battled back to tie the score at 30-30 just before halftime.
The Lady Tigers took control in the second half and held on for a 59-49 victory, earning them a trip to Indianapolis and a date with Baylor.
Augustus, who was named the Regional Most Outstanding Player, led the way with 24 points and seven rebounds, while freshman Sylvia Fowles added 13 points and 11 rebounds.
The RCA Dome was the site of the battle between the Lady Bears and the Lady Tigers in the National Semifinal. LSU jumped out to an early 15-point lead only to have Baylor chip back and eventually tie the score 28-28 at the break.
Unlike the Regional Final victory over Duke, this time Baylor, the eventual National Champions, took control in the second half and pulled away with a 68-57 victory.
2004 Women's Final Four
The First Lady Tiger Team To Reach NCAA Final Four
With head coach Sue Gunter missing the last half of the season due to illness, acting head coach Pokey Chatman led the Lady Tigers to the program’s first trip to the NCAA Final Four and ironically enough, it was just down to the road in New Orleans.
The Lady Tigers road to the Final Four begin at home in the Pete Maravich Assembly Center with victories over Austin Peay in the first round and Maryland in the second round. A 83-66 win over Austin Peay was sparked by a 21-point performance by all-American Seimone Augustus, while the Baton Rouge native poured in 26 in the 76-61 win over Maryland two nights later.
The fourth-seeded Lady Tigers now had a date with top seeded Texas in the West Regional semifinal in Seattle,Wash. LSU was looking for revenge from the year before when Texas had knocked off the top-seeded Lady Tigers in the regional final. Revenge is just what LSU got with a 71-55 victory over the Longhorns led by Augustus’ career-high 29 points. SEC foe Georgia would be the opponent in the regional final.
It would prove to be one of best NCAA Tournament games in history with the lead going back and forth until Georgia took a seven point lead with six minutes to play. LSU did not falter, chipping away at the lead using a 8-1 run in the final four minutes to take the lead and hold it for a 62-60 victory and the program’s first trip to the NCAA Final Four.
Augustus matched her career-high with 29 points, including a late free throw, while Temeka Johnson added 19 points, including a 15-foot jumper that gave the Lady Tigers the lead for good.
Augustus was named the West Regional Most Outstanding Player and Johnson joined her on the West Regional All-Tournament team.
LSU had a date with rival and SEC foe Tennessee in the national semifinal game in the New Orleans Arena, just 70 miles from the Baton Rouge campus.
The Lady Vols ended LSU’s magical run, 52-50, with a dramatic late steal and lay-up for Tennessee.
LSU ended the season with a 27-8 overall record and a run to the Final Four, the school’s first.