Stefan Moody steals spotlight from Ben Simmons, but LSU tops Ole Miss

Stefan Moody scored 33 in a loss at LSU. (USATSI)

Ben Simmons is a change-the-game kind of prospect and will be one of the first players picked in this summer’s NBA Draft after he is done with this season at LSU. His production through two full months of the season, leading the Tigers in every major statistical category, has been enough to affirm the projections for this Aussie-born basketball star; now we can’t get enough of Ben Simmons.

That kind of spotlight has made LSU a marked team, so Johnny Jones should expect every opponent to have at least one player (though in reality many more) who will bring a little extra juice to the game. On Wednesday night, that player was Ole Miss guard Stefan Moody.

Moody has scored 20-plus points in 11 straight games and entered the night as the SEC’s leading scorer at 23.9 points per game. The senior went off for a career-high 33 points in a losing effort against LSU, knocking down six of his 11 three-point attempts in a 90-81 loss.

Moody was pulling up from the midcourt logo and flying in for put-back dunks. At one point in the second half, it looked like no one was going to take this game from Moody’s grasp.

Moody has three 30-point games this season now, but the stellar performance wasn’t enough to keep pace with a Tigers team that responded well with a strong finish to the game.

Ben Simmons was not his usual dominant self, but he was good as a distributor (seven assists) and turned it on enough in the second half with 11 of his 15 points. Antonio Blakeney (15 points, four rebounds) and Tim Quarterman (14 points) were efficient on offense and Craig Victor II (18 points, six rebounds) led the Tigers in scoring for the evening.

LSU is now 10-6 overall but most importantly 3-1 in SEC play. The more victories the Tigers can string together, the more those early losses will be easy to overlook. Simmons and the rest of his teammates will spend the rest of the week in Baton Rouge and return to the court to face Arkansas on Saturday.

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