Despite a horrific first half Nate Oats' Alabama Basketball team held their lead atop the SEC with an 85-76 win. The win gives the Alabama Basketball team a full game lead on every team in the conference. A tough road win for the Alabama Basketball team provided us with a new style of basketball showing the team can win when the three-point shot isn't falling.
The Alabama Basketball team was without Davin Cosby Jr who was dealing with illness and Nick Pringle who was suspended for conduct detrimental to the team according to the broadcast crew. This is Pringle's second suspension for conduct detrimental to the team this season as he missed the Arkansas State game earlier in the year.
The team dealt with more adversity before the game as Jarin Stevenson and Rylan Griffen were late to pregame warmups due to being stuck in a hotel elevator which may have attributed to the team's slow start.
The first half was the worst 20 minutes of the season for the Alabama Basketball team with the Crimson Tide getting dominated in every facet of the game. The dominance started on the glass where the Bulldogs out-rebounded the Tide 26-8. Three-point shots were hard to come by as well with Alabama shooting 2-11 from deep. The Crimson Tide trailed the Bulldogs 41-27 at the half the worst first half of the season offensively by nine points for the Tide.
The second half would bring more of the Alabama Basketball that we are used to with the Alabama Basketball team piecing together runs to close the gap. The tough defense from the Alabama Basketball team sparked a comeback push rather than the team's traditional way of shooting their way back into the game. A Grant Nelson put-back layup with five minutes left in the game gave the Crimson Tide their first lead of the night. Down the stretch, Mark Sears was incredible scoring 19 of his 23 points in the second half. Grant Nelson's performance in the final two minutes won this game for the Alabama Basketball team with two massive three-point shots and great defense finishing with 20 points.
Alabama Basketball: Tide showed resiliency on the road
When the shots weren't falling, and the Bulldogs led by 14 at the half this game easily could've been a blowout. Instead, the team all but ditched the three-point shot, and converted tough shots inside en route to a massive win on the road. This game was a massive return to form for Grant Nelson who had a stretch of terrible shooting before tonight's game. The Alabama Basketball team needs to find a way to start games better especially on the road as massive comebacks are going to be difficult as the games get harder.
Note: All stats via ESPN