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Alabama Basketball Lays An Egg in the Second Half

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A three point halftime lead evaporated quickly in a loss to the Aggies.

Syndication: Tuscaloosa News
Keon Ellis fires up a shot for the Tide

Looking to secure their 20th win of the season, the Crimson Tide basketball team played a pretty good first half and led Texas A&M 40-37 at the break. The game felt like Bama should have been ahead by a larger margin, but turnovers held the team back from doing so. The second half was a different story (a tale of two halves, perhaps?) and the Aggies ran away with a victory by the score of 87-71.

Coach Nate Oats sent out yet another different staring lineup to begin the game, going with JD Davison, Keon Ellis, Jaden Shackelford, Charles Bediako, and Darius Miles. The first 20 minutes were played evenly for the most part, but the Tide was able to reach a 38-32 lead with 1:24 left in the period. The Aggies hit a late three pointer to make the score 40-37 in favor of the Tide at the break.

Alabama shot well in the first half at 15-29 for 52% including 5-13 for 38% from three and made all five of their free throws. TAMU shot 50% at 14-28 with 2-5 from deep and 7- 7 from the line.

Texas A&M started the second half on an 8-0 run to seize a lead they would never relinquish. The Aggies had a lead of 47-42 with 16:23 left in the game, meaning the Tide had scored just two points at that point. Ellis came alive and scored his team’s next eight points to keep the Tide within striking distance at 59-53 with 14:03 remaining. Quenton Jackson kept punishing Bama with basket after basket and the Tide trailed 63-54 with 9:26 on the clock.

The last ditch chance for Bama was when, with a chance to cut the lead, the instead committed (another) turnover and the game was out of reach at 74-61 with 5:02 left. The Tide scored a few more garbage points while the Aggies kept pouring in basket after basket and the clock stopped with an embarrassing 87-61 TAMU win.

The visitors shot a lights out 19-30 for 63% in the second half including 5-11 for 46% from deep and 7-8 free throws. Overall the team not known for their offense finished 33-58 for 57%, 7-16 for 43% from three, and 14-15 from the free throw line. The Aggies had 33 rebounds, 13 assists, 10 steals, three blocks, and 16 turnovers. Bama cooled to 11-25 for 44% in the second with 3-11 for 27% from deep and 6-10 from the stripe. Overall the Tide was 26-54 for 48%, 8-24 for 33% from three, and 11-15 for 73% from the free throw line. Alabama finished with 24 rebounds, only six on the offensive glass, 18 assists, eight steals, five blocks, and committed 19 big (mostly unforced) turnovers. TAM scored 44 points in the paint, 13 second chance points. and 29 points off of Tide turnovers. In contrast Alabama had only two second chance points.

Individually Shackelford led the way with 16 points on 4-10 shooting from deep, Jahvon Quinerly added 14 points and Ellis tossed in 13. Bediako had eight points and a team high five rebounds while Davison had six points and a team high six assists. TAMU got 28 points from Jackson, 22 from Tyrece Radford, and 18 from Henry Coleman III.

This was just another poor effort by the Tide. Oats once again lamented the lack of effort and that he didn't know how to get what he needs out of this group. Texas A&M is far from an offensive juggernaut and should never be allowed to put up 87 points on your defense. The Aggies shot lights out but many of the makes were of the wide open variety. The effort the visitors put forth was far superior to the home team especially on securing 50/50 balls. TAMU seemingly came up with every loose ball. Once again the Tide will need to regroup and try to get win number 20 on the road on Saturday. Alabama travels to Baton Rouge to take on LSU at 11 a.m. The game will be shown on CBS.

Roll Tide