Five Score in Double Figures to Push Alabama Men’s Basketball Past Missouri, 80-71
The Alabama men’s basketball team led by as many as 24 points and went on to defeat Missouri, 80-71, in front of a sellout crowd at Coleman Coliseum on Saturday afternoon. Five Crimson Tide players scored double-digit points, led by sophomore forward Riley Norris’ 18-point day.
In addition to Norris’ scoring output, senior guard Retin Obasohan tallied 16 points to go along with a game-high seven rebounds and four assists on the night. Sophomore guard Justin Coleman had his second straight solid outing, finishing with 14 points and a team-leading five assists.
“Really terrific effort by our guys today,” head coach Avery Johnson said. “We were fortunate because of our efforts on defense and offense to build a pretty sizable lead, and we did it by the way we moved the ball on offense. We only had three turnovers at the half, that’s a miracle. We were able to build the lead in the first half, 12-point lead going in at halftime and then we came out and we did some pretty nice things in the first five to seven minutes in the second half.
“I am really proud of our guys. I am not as focused on how we lost the lead. We had some younger guys in there, some walk-ons, guys who needed to get some minutes and improve. They have been working hard on our scout team, so I was glad that we were able to get them some minutes. I am glad that we won the game and the way we won the game.”
The Tide took control of the game early with a 15-2 run midway through the first half. The run turned a 16-16 tie into a 31-18 lead for Alabama. The Tide outrebounded Missouri (8-15, 1-9 SEC) 20-13 in the first half and turned the ball over just three times en route to taking a 40-28 lead into the locker room.
Out of the break, the teams traded baskets until Alabama went on a 10-0 run to extend its lead to the largest of the lead, 67-43, with 9:28 remaining.
However, the Tigers never gave up and responded with an 8-0 spurt to cut the Alabama lead to 67-51. Missouri eventually cut the lead to single digits down the stretch, but could not overcome the Tide’s advantage.
Alabama shot 47 percent from the field and 50 percent in the second half. The team blocked nine shots with Jimmie Taylor and Donta Hall each recording four swats. Alabama finished with 21 second chance points.
Arthur Edwards (11) and Jimmie Taylor (11) also finished in double figures. It was the second time this season that Alabama has had five players score in double-figures. Both Taylor and Donta Hall blocked four shots on the night.
Kevin Puryear finished with a game-high 22 points for the Tigers. Ryan Rosburg scored 17 points and led Missouri with seven rebounds.
Alabama takes on No. 8 Texas A&M on Wednesday, Feb. 10 in Coleman Coliseum. The Tide is 4-2 against ranked opponents this season. The game will tip off at 6 p.m. CT on SEC Network.