LSU basketball’s senior day was something the players, coaches and fans will not soon forget. Honoring seniors Skylar Mays, Marlon Taylor, Marshall Graves and the late Wayde Sims, the Tigers routed the Georgia Bulldogs on Saturday 94-64 to close out the regular season.
LSU finished with a 21-10 record and tied with Auburn for second place in the Southeastern Conference with 12 SEC wins.
The 2020 Senior Class received standing ovations during the pregame honors. Sims was honored by his parents, who were also recognized at halftime for the presentation of a scholarship in Wayde’s name by Hancock Whitney and the Tiger Athletic Foundation.
LSU put on an offensive clinic against Georgia. The Tigers hit 11 three-pointers on 21 attempts and had 19 assists on 34 baskets.
Taylor led all scorers with a career-high 30 points shooting 10-for-17 from the field followed by May’s 19 points and six rebounds.
“I was trying to give the team everything I could,” Taylor said. “I had a good feeling early on. Today was a special day. It was my last game in the PMAC, so I had to go out with a bang. I’m happy I got to finish it out with my brothers. It was a tough journey.”
Graves was placed into the starting lineup for the first time in his career on senior day. Graves, who had played with Sims’ scholarship for the last season and a half, hit a three-pointer with 44 (Sim’s number) seconds left to extend the Tigers’ lead to 32.
“Man, that’s perfect,” Mays said. “You can’t end it on a better story. That’s the only story that comes close to how Marlon played today. I’m just so happy for these guys.”
Sophomore Javonte Smart also recorded his first career double-double, scoring 13 points and dishing 10 assists. Smart, who typically runs the offense at point guard for LSU, took a back seat in favor of the seniors on Saturday.
“I wanted to let the guys do their thing, whatever they had to do,” Smart said. “It was their last night in the PMAC so obviously we wanted to win it. Skylar and Marlon had a big night tonight to help us win.”
Defensively, LSU held Georgia to 36.2 percent shooting and only allowed three triples. Mays hopes the Tigers’ defensive efforts can carry into the SEC Tournament when they face South Carolina, Arkansas or Vanderbilt Friday night around 8:30 p.m. on SEC Network.
“We are a dangerous team when we get things going, come out the right way and think of defense first,” Mays said. “I think they only scored 64 points today, so when we think defense first, we are one of the better teams in the country. We definitely have some momentum going into the SEC Tournament, and we are looking to do big things in Nashville.”
After a senior day in which his spirit was undeniably with them, Sims continues to live through the Tigers. He always has and always will.