No. 13 Kentucky tops No. 14 LSU 63-56

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 2, 2014 at 2:34 pm •  Published: February 2, 2014

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky didn't like the way things were going after losing two of three games in the Southeastern Conference during the past two weeks.

The 13th-ranked Wildcats spent Friday putting the past behind them and changing their mental approach instead of practicing. The concept worked as Kentucky rebounded from Thursday's 58-56 loss to Georgia with a 63-56 win over No. 14 LSU Sunday at Memorial Coliseum.

Kentucky coach Matthew Mitchell credited his players for making a successful turnaround in a three-day span.

"They did a lot of soul-searching, changed their attitude from (last) Thursday night, and it's not easy to do," he said. "It's a significant victory for us over a very, very good basketball team."

Kentucky senior Samarie Walker said meeting was "intense" and beneficial.

"It was a tell-all meeting," Walker said. "He was being open and honest with (Mitchell) and we were open and honest with him. We talked collectively what we needed to do as a team to move on from the past. It helped us a lot."

Bria Goss scored 11 points, including two clutch free throws with 10.8 seconds remaining to avoid a third Southeastern Conference loss at home. Kentucky (17-5, 5-4 SEC), which had lost two of their past three games, ended LSU's three-game winning streak.

"To gut this one out and find a way to win is huge," Mitchell said.

Mitchell added the Wildcats haven't solved all of their problems, but made progress against the Lady Tigers.

"It looked like we were back to Kentucky, the way we were playing," Goss said.

Kentucky led 48-33 with 11:22 remaining but LSU fought back down the stretch, narrowing the deficit to 60-56 with 17 seconds remaining. The Wildcats made 3 of 4 free throws in the closing seconds to seal the win.

A steal by Goss on an inbounds play resulted in her game-clinching free throws. Kentucky made eight 3-pointers, including two by Jennifer O'Neill.

O'Neill followed Goss with 10 points, scoring eight in the first half.

Raigyne Moncrief scored 14 points in the second half and led LSU (17-5, 6-3) with 19 points. Theresa Plaisance added 13 for the Lady Tigers, who committed 18 turnovers.

"They did a nice job of capitalizing off our turnovers," LSU coach Nikki Caldwell said. "Taking care of the basketball was an issue for us and a lot of missed layups."