After missing the past four games, LSU star forward Angel Reese is set to make her long-awaited return to the court on Thursday when the Tigers take on the No. 9 Virginia Tech Hokies, CBS News reports.
According to head coach Kim Mulkey, Reese was away from the team due to unspecified "locker-room issues."
This past weekend, Reese and junior guard Kateri Poole did not make the trip to play in the Cayman Islands Classic adding to the speculation about why the “Bayou Barbie” was missing in action.
Mulkey, who faced criticism for not revealing details about her star player’s absence, expressed her excitement about her star forward’s return to play.
"It doesn't matter. Angel is back and we are happy, happy, happy,” Mulkey said. “We're past it. We were past it after it happened. It's just fun to watch them high-five and pick each other up off the floor and just do what they do, play basketball.”
"It's just we have to come in here and answer questions and that becomes aggravating,” she added.
Reese’s last game was on Nov. 14 against Kent State. She started that game but was benched for the entire second half. Without Reese in the lineup, the Tigers played Southeastern Louisiana, Texas Southern, and their two games in the Cayman Islands Classic.
When asked why Reese was not in the lineup, Mulkey was irritated by questions from members of the media.
"It's very obvious Angel was not in uniform," Mulkey said. "Angel is a part of this basketball team, and we hope to see her sooner rather than later."
As of Thursday, Poole has not returned to the team.
Mulkey said she would give an update on Poole’s status when the team returned to Louisiana.
Although the Tigers missed Reese’s presence on the court, they went 4-0 while she was away from the team.
In her first four games of the season, Reese is averaging 17.0 points, 10.3 rebounds per game, and she’s shooting 46.9% from the field.
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