Men's Basketball Defeats LSU, 69-53
Alabama 69, LSU 53[Box Score]
Trevor Releford, 20
Andre Stinger, 13
Justin Hamilton, 6
Chris Bass, 2
Justin Hamilton, 2
Jan. 11, 2012
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - The Alabama men's basketball team improved to 13-3 and 2-0 in Southeastern Conference play with a 69-53 win over the LSU Tigers before 14,425 fans Wednesday night at Coleman Coliseum. With the loss, LSU drops to 11-5 overall and 1-1 in SEC action.
Sophomore guard Trevor Releford scored a game and season-high 20 points on 9-of-11 shooting, leading the Crimson Tide in scoring for the fourth time in the past five games. Junior forward Tony Mitchell recorded his ninth career double-double, and fifth of the season, with 11 points and 10 rebounds. Freshman forward Trevor Lacey added a career-high 10 rebounds to go along with six points.
"It's always good when you can get a win," UA head coach Anthony Grant said. "Obviously now in the SEC, we get to take our record to 2-0 in the league and I'm pleased with that. There are a lot of things today I think we did do well."
Alabama scored 25 points off 15 LSU turnovers while holding a 32-18 scoring advantage on points in the paint. The Tigers connected on just 19-of-53 shots (35.8%), and were outrebounded by a margin of 39-29. Alabama's defense, which came into the game allowing just 55.9 points per game, held an opponent to 60 points or less for the 13th time this season.
On the other side of the ball, Releford has now connected on 35 of his last 48 shots in his past five games, all Crimson Tide victories, good for an astounding 72.9 shooting percentage. He has also added 15 assists and 14 steals during that span, while averaging 17.2 points.
"We just had to come out with our defensive intensity to stop them from scoring," Releford said. "We had to shoot from behind the three, because that would allow us to transition and take the shots that we wanted to take."
A 15-3 run to close the first half, punctuated by a Levi Randolph three-point basket just before the halftime buzzer, broke open a tight-knit contest and gave the Tide a 31-19 advantage at intermission. Following the halftime break, Alabama quickly pushed the advantage to 14 points on two separate occasions before LSU scored six straight to make the score 40-32 at the 14:25 juncture.
After that quick LSU scoring spurt, the Tide reeled off nine consecutive points as part of an 18-5 scoring run, highlighted by a thunderous Mitchell dunk, to give Alabama its biggest lead of the game at 21 points.
Next up, Alabama travels to Starkville, Miss. on Saturday, Jan. 14 to take on the Mississippi State Bulldogs. Tip-off is scheduled for 3 p.m.