The Alabama Crimson Tide was unable to bounce back from a heartbreaking loss on the road versus Cincinnati on Saturday, as the Tide returned home to Coleman Coliseum and lost to the Dayton Flyers 81-76. Last season, Alabama traveled to Dayton and was handed a 74-62 loss, making the Tide 0-2 against Dayton in the last two season.
Dayton, Alabama head coach Anthony Grant’s alma mater, was led by Kevin Dilliard, who scored 25 points and added four rebounds, six assists and two steals.
Alabama’s transition defense was a major issue for most of the game, paving the way for forward Josh Benson to score his 21 points on the night.
Another issue for Alabama was its shooting from the floor and from behind the three-point line. Alabama shot 37 percent from the floor (20-54) and made seven of its 25 attempted three-point shots to end the game with a 28 percent mark from behind the three-point line.
Free throws were a great benefit for Alabama, making 29 of its 32 free throws to end at 90.6 percent. Point guard Trevor Releford made all eight of his free throws to end the game with 13 points by fouling out with less than 30 seconds left.
Releford was one of four double-digit scorers for Alabama, led by Trevor Lacey with 16. Levi Randolph led the team in minutes with 35 and contributed 15 points. The team’s leading rebounder was Rodney Cooper, with seven, who also scored 12 points on 4-for-15 shooting.
As final examinations begin at the University of Alabama on Monday, the Tide will comply with NCAA rules and not hold a game from Monday, Dec. 10 through Friday, Dec. 14, so the players can take their final exams. Alabama will pick up again on the 15th with a road trip to Richmond to face the VCU Rams.
The return trip, after VCU’s visit to Coleman Coliseum last season, will satisfy a contractual obligation for Grant when he left VCU to take over at Alabama.