ed: sorry this is late, got lost in the football shuffle
The Alabama basketball team continues to be frustrating to watch and cheer for as terrible three point shooting and lack of inside toughness continue to fail them, most recently against Western Kentucky. The Hilltoppers pulled out a 73-71 win in a game where the biggest lead was six points. The first half started especially slow for the Tide before Jahvon Quinerly made an appearance, coming off the bench for the first time all year. Quinerly scored six quick points to keep Bama in the game, despite shooting 3-19 from deep in the period. WKU took a 34-33 lead into the locker room after the Tide called time out with 12 seconds left, and proceeded to throw the ball away.
Coach Nate Oats started James Rojas over Quinerly in the contest after his strong performance in the last game. The second half was a wild, back and forth encounter with the teams trading the lead back and forth over the last few minutes. The Tide had a chance to take a 4 point lead when Herbert Jones had a clear path to the basket and looked like he couldn’t decide on a dunk or lay in. He did neither. WKU tied it up and then after getting the ball back again Bama was called for a goal tend ( good call, actually) to give the Hilltoppers a 73-71 lead.
For those watching on TV the announcers were confused all day, and said it was a shot clock violation as the Tide raced down the court. Jones drove and unfortunately missed another layup and the Tide lost 73-71.
Western shot 27-60 including 3-11 from deep, had 38 rebounds, 10 assists, 11 steals, and three blocks. Bama was 22-56 with only 7-26 from three, 20-26 from the free throw line, had 35 rebounds, seven assists, 19 turnovers, eight steals and three blocks.
Individually Jones led the way with 16 points and four rebounds. Jordan Bruner had 14 points and six boards, John Petty shot poorly again and had nine points, seven rebounds, and three assists. Jaden Shackelfor added 12 points, while Quinerly finished with nine and Josh Primo had eight. The star of the game was big man Charles Bassey for WKU with 27 points and 12 rebounds. The Tide had no answer for the big guy.
Live by the three, die by the three was written for this Tide team. With no real inside presence that appears the way the season will go. Hope for the best.