Alabama Uses Second Half Run to Push Past Louisiana, 73-68, in Charity Exhibition

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The Alabama men’s basketball team used a big 28-8 second half run to push past Louisiana, 73-68, in Sunday’s charity exhibition contest inside Coleman Coliseum.

Senior guard Keon Ellis scored 16 of his game-high 21 points over the final 20 minutes of action to lead three Alabama players in double figures. Highly-touted freshman JD Davison scored 19 points and shared the team lead with Ellis with four steals. Meanwhile, graduate transfer Noah Gurley added 13 points before fouling out.

Game Stats

  • The Tide trailed for 26:38 for the entire game and only led for 11:24, all but 18 seconds of that came in the second half
  • Freshman Charles Bediako finished with seven points, five rebounds and three blocks
  • Alabama forced Louisiana into 25 turnovers to result in a 23-13 edge in points off turnovers
  • Darius Miles finished with seven points, four rebounds and three steals – all of which came after intermission – and led the team with a plus-minus of +11
  • Juwan Gary and Jahvon Quinerly were suspended for the game for a violation of team rules

First Half

  • The Rajun Cajuns established an early lead, leading 16-7 after 10 minutes of action
  • Keon Ellis hit the team’s only two three pointers of the half
  • An emphatic Keon Ambrose-Hylton dunk capped off a 7-0 run tying up the game at 21-21 with 3:39 left 
  • JD Davidson wrapped up the first half with a buzzer beater layup 
  • In a physical first half with 17 combined fouls, the Tide knocked down 8-10 free throws

Second Half

  • After trailing by a score of 33-32 at the half, Louisiana began the second stanza by outscoring Alabama 13-7 across the first four minutes
  • After a made three by Louisiana, the Tide responded once again, this time with a 15-3 run over the next 6:25 to take a 67-57 lead with 4:16 remaining
  • Combined, we went on a 28-8 run over a span of 10:26 to turn a 46-39 deficit into a 10-point lead
  • Davison scored the final six points, including hitting all four of his free throws to secure the victory

Coach Oats Postgame Comments

“It was a perfect exhibition game in my opinion. They are a good team and that is the reason we chose to do a charity exhibition against a D-I program. Louisiana is really good, they are going to battle you and stretch you. It showed us that we have plenty of work to do in these next coming weeks. We struggled making shots in the first half. When shots don’t fall, it puts a lot of pressure on your offense. I thought our defense played outstanding tonight. To figure out how to win a game against a very good team – and Louisiana is a very good team with some high-major bigs –when we play that poorly on offense. It really speaks to the culture we’ve built around defense. We have got to do a much better job on the offensive side of the ball. I don’t think (the coaching staff) did a great job getting our guys ready to go against their defense, but I can’t say enough about our defense’s performance tonight.”

Next Up

  • Alabama will open the 2021-22 regular season on Nov. 9 when it hosts Louisiana Tech
  • The contest will tip off at 8 p.m. CT and air on SEC Network

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