Alabama Men’s Basketball Holds No. 20 Ole Miss 74-53
The Alabama men’s basketball team rolled to its sixth straight home victory over a top-25 opponent as it defeated No. 20 Ole Miss, 74-53, inside Coleman Coliseum on Tuesday night.
It marked the Tide’s eighth win in its last 12 games against ranked opponents (8-4) dating back to last season, which leads all Southeastern Conference schools over that span.
It was another team effort on both ends of the floor in Tuesday night’s contest. Alabama not only collected its largest victory of the season in the 21-point win, but held Ole Miss to its lowest point total while also allowing the fewest points to any opponent this season.
"First of all, I want to congratulate coach Kermit Davis and the job he has done this season, especially in his first year,” Alabama head coach Avery Johnson said. “I had a great relationship also with Andy Kennedy, who coached a lot of these guys, especially [Breein] Tyree and [Terence] Davis who are outstanding SEC guards. To see what Coach Davis has done in his first year has been pretty remarkable.
“Fortunately, tonight we were just a consistent basketball team. There is really no rocket science. They didn't grow, their hands didn't get any bigger, they’re not jumping any higher or running any faster. They didn't gain 25 pounds of muscle. We were just consistent all night and we had a mindset that we refused to lose. We had five guys on the floor for a loose ball. I've never seen that since I've been here at Alabama. Again, our guys were hungry. They had something to prove. They wanted to bounce back from a very disappointing loss at Tennessee and I'm awfully proud of our guys."
Sophomore John Petty Jr. continued his stellar play, leading all players with 15 points on the night. Senior Donta Hall recorded his fourth consecutive and league-leading 10th double-double of the year with 11 points and 10 rebounds. In doing so, Hall becomes the first UA player since Richard Hendrix in 2008 to record a double-double in four consecutive contests. Sophomore Galin Smith added a career-high tying 10 points off the bench.
Alabama’s (12-6, 3-3 SEC) bench scored 35 points on the night, marking the fifth consecutive game it has scored 30 or more points. The Tide used stifling defense as it held Ole Miss (14-4, 4-2) to just 40 percent from the field and 30 percent from deep, while collecting nine blocks and a season-high nine steals on the night.
The Rebels held a 7-6 advantage over the Crimson Tide early in the game, but it would be the last lead they would hold in the game. Alabama used a 13-2 run to bring the lead up to, 17-9, in favor of the Crimson Tide. Alabama continued its scoring ways with Petty putting up 12 of his 15 points in the first half.
The Crimson Tide held a 29-24 lead with 5:27 left to play in the opening half, but ended the stanza on a 13-2 run which pushed the lead to 42-26.
Alabama built upon the run at the end of the first half, stretching its lead to 50-27 with 15:18 remaining in the contest. In all, the Tide’s 21-3 run lasted 11:05 and spanned halftime. Alabama would go on to lead by as many as 29 points before settling for the 21-point victory.
Alabama will next step outside of league play to compete in the SEC/Big 12 Challenge when it travels to Waco, Texas, to take on the Baylor Bears. The game is slated to tip off at 11 a.m. CT and will be televised on ESPNU.