LSU women’s basketball’s Angel Reese is in her fourth season playing for Kim Mulkey, and after four seasons, the star forward knows a few things about the Tigers’ head coach’s personality.
So when Reese saw Mulkey explode at an official during No. 7 LSU’s 81-36 victory over Northwestern State on Sunday, she knew she needed to do something. After Mulkey shook Reese off, the forward called for a little help in the stands—the coach’s 29-year-old son Kramer Robertson.
“It’s precious, she’s pulling me back and she just finally said, ‘Kramer, come help me,'” Mulkey said postgame with a smile. “She’s calling my son from the stands. It was precious. It’s just moments like that that you’ll reflect on when you’re a coach—when you’re retired that you’ll reflect on as a coach. Just fighting for my kid.”
The ejection occurred in the fourth quarter with LSU leading by 41 points. Junior guard Aneesah Morrow got out in transition and scored a layup, but she was whistled for a charge as she crashed into Northwestern State guard Karmelah Dean.
An enraged Mulkey reacted in disbelief, gesticulating passionately at the official, who whistled her for a pair of technicals and ejected her from the game
Reese briefly approached Mulkey to hold her back before retreating to the bench, but she returned to try to calm the four-time national champion who continued to berate the official after she was thrown out.
Mulkey eventually left the court to applause from LSU fans.
“It was fun,” Reese said after the game when she was asked about holding her coach back. “I mean, me and coach Mulkey have similar personalities, and we really like to win, no matter the score. Of course, she’s going to fight for us, and we all fight for her. So that moment was fun, and we knew we had her back, and she had our back.”
Mulkey declined to discuss specifics of her ejection in order to avoid criticizing the referee, joking to reporters that she was trying to make sure “y’all stay and have to work late.” She did concede that the decision to toss her was the right one.
“He did the right thing,” Mulkey said. “I’m not questioning that. In fact, I think I helped him. I said, ‘I’m not leaving you. You better toss me.’ Something like that, I think, I don’t remember exactly. But it was like, he had no choice.”
Mulkey added that a number of people reached out in the aftermath.
“I did get a lot of text messages from those that still love me,” Mulkey said. “Like, ‘Girl, you got an ovation for getting tossed.'”
Mulkey said Tigers assistant coach Bob Starkey took over and guided the team the rest of the way to their blowout victory.
LSU is now 11-1 this season. The defending national champions will play Baltimore-based Coppin State on Wednesday, just 20 minutes from Reese’s Maryland hometown of Randallstown.