The Alabama Crimson Tide (7-8, 1-1 SEC) dropped its first SEC game on Saturday afternoon on the road against the Georgia Bulldogs (8-6, 2-0 SEC) 66-58.
The Bulldogs opened up an early lead that quickly turned into a double digit deficit for the Tide. Georgia took a 34-23 lead into halftime and was dominating the game on both sides of the ball.
Freshman forward Shannon Hale proved to be one of the Tide’s only offensive threats in the first half. He finished with 14 points and 5 rebounds, almost all of which came in the first twenty minutes of play.
Senior guard Trevor Releford once again lead Alabama in scoring with 17 points, 4 steals, and 3 assists. Releford was all but absent in the first half scoring just 2 points. Junior guard Rodney Cooper was the only other Tide player in double-figures with 15 points off the bench. Cooper saw increased playing time with Retin Obasohan, Levi Randolph, and Trevor Releford all in foul trouble.
The Tide had no answer down the stretch for Georgia guards Kenny Gaines and Charles Mann. Gaines and Mann both scored 22 points. Mann finished with 13 points from the free throw line and was just three rebounds shy of a double-double.
Georgia enjoyed some rare success from the free throw line on Saturday afternoon. The Bulldogs shot 70.5 percent from the line on 31-44 attempts. Although several of those attempts came late in the second half, Alabama’s lack of disciple on defense led to easy points for Georgia.
With the loss, Alabama drops to 0-6 away from Coleman Coliseum. Saturday’s loss also drops the Tide to 0-8 when allowing an opponent to score 66 points or more.
The Georgia Bulldogs are off to a very impressive start to conference play. After losing four-straight games in mid-November the Bulldogs have only lost two games. Georgia knocked off No. 21 Missouri on January 8 to start SEC play. The Bulldogs will look to improve to 3-0 on the road against the No. 10 Florida Gators (13-2, 2-0 SEC) on January 14.
Alabama will look to rebound against the Mississippi State Bulldogs (11-4, 1-1 SEC) at home on January 15 at 7 pm CT. Television coverage will be provided by the SEC Network and via the WatchESPN app. Radio coverage, as always, will be provided by your local CTSN affiliate.