Alabama’s basketball team saw what happened in Atlanta earlier in the evening, and refused to be outdone by their counterparts on the gridiron. They came out with tons of energy and knocking down shots, and in the end took home a 91-82 victory over Gonzaga in the Battle for Seattle.
Alabama came out firing early and often, and ran the Zags off the court to the tune of 51-35, giving the Tide 115 points in its last two halves of basketball. Jaden Shackelford led the way with 20 first half points, but it was a total team effort. The ball movement was spectacular, the threes were falling, and the defense was solid. Nate Oats elected to put Juwan Gary on 7’1” wunderkind Chet Holmgren for much of the half, and he did a pretty good job.
Foul trouble was about the only blemish on the opening half, as Holmgren and skilled big Drew Timme had both Noah Gurley and Charles Bediako sporting three fouls going into the break. Juwan Gary had two at the half, but quickly added two more early on in the second half. That made things tight in the post.
Unsurprisingly, Gonzaga fought back hard in the second half. With eight minutes to play, the Tide had four players with four fouls apiece and saw the lead trimmed to eight. The Zags kept fighting and whittling away at the lead, and at the four minute mark the Tide was clinging to a 76-72 advantage.
This Alabama team is resilient, folks.
JD Davison knocked down a clutch three then, following a three from Jahvon Quinerly, anticipated a pass and took a steal in for a thunderous slam to put the Tide up 12.
This team just oozes potential. Davison is only going to keep getting better, and if they continue to jell as a unit, there is absolutely no limit to what they can accomplish. The Tide will now have a week off before facing Houston next Saturday.
What a game. What a night.