Alabama Mounts A Late Second Half Comeback to Hold Off Louisiana Tech, 77-74
The No. 24-ranked Alabama men’s basketball team used a second half surge to outlast Louisiana Tech, 77-74, Wednesday night in Coleman Coliseum. The Crimson Tide (6-1) knocked down 13 consecutive free throws in the second half to help spark a 17-9 run over the last 4:31 to secure the victory.
Sophomore Dazon Ingram tied a career-high with 22 points, hitting 13-of-17 free throws on the night, and added nine rebounds, while freshman Collin Sexton also contributed 22 points to go with three steals and three assists. Junior Donta Hall was very efficient on both ends of the floor, scoring 15 points, with a season-best five dunks, collecting seven rebounds and blocking four shots.
Alabama handed Louisiana Tech (5-1) its first loss of the season and held the Bulldogs to 36.9 percent shooting. The Crimson Tide outrebounded the Bulldogs 43-36.
“It was a terrific second half for our team, I’m really proud of them,” head coach Avery Johnson said. “Those guys that were in there in the second half played both ends of the floor. They were hustling and they played with a lot of passion. We finally started playing a little bit smarter and took better care of the ball. I was proud of the performance by Dazon (Ingram) because it started with him, and Collin (Sexton), in terms of the backcourt, the way they dominated, getting to the basket and making shots for us while also making good decisions. Then Donta Hall was in there rebounding for us and catching those short passes from those guys, being ready.”
The Tide seized the momentum at the end of the first half by using an 8-0 run over the final 2:09 to trim a double-digit lead to just 1, 38-37, at intermission. However, Tech came out of the break hot, going on a 9-0 run over a 3:45 period for its largest lead, 48-37, at the 17:08 mark.
Alabama then answered with a 9-1 run of its own to cut the Bulldogs’ lead to 53-50 with 9:13 left. After Sexton tied the game up at 67-67 with 3:16 left on the clock, the two teams traded baskets down the stretch with four lead changes. Senior Riley Norris converted a put back layup with 1:18 left to play that gave Alabama the 71-70 lead. Ingram and Sexton would both knock down their last four free-throws to edge out the Bulldogs at the final buzzer. In all, the Tide converted 16-of-18 (88.9 percent) from the charity stripe in the second half.
The two squads posted similar numbers in the first half with Alabama shooting an even 50 percent (12-of-24) from the field while LA tech shot 38.7 percent (12-of-31) from the field. One of the main tales of the first stanza was on the free throw line as Louisiana Tech shot 10-of-14 from the charity stripe while The Tide went just 11-of-19.
Louisiana Tech held the lead for all but 50 seconds in the first half, and led by as many as 10 points, 29-19, in the opening 20 minutes.
The Bulldogs were led by Daquan Bracey’s 21 points on the night, while Jacobi Boykens added 14.
Alabama will return to action Sunday, Dec. 3, when it hosts UCF. Tipoff is at 1 p.m. CT inside Coleman Coliseum. The game will be televised on ESPNU.