Inside the Box Score - vs. South Carolina

ROLLTIDEDOTCOM Tony Mitchell was a nearly constant force on the floor, playing 38 minutes.
Tony Mitchell was a nearly constant force on the floor, playing 38 minutes.

Jan. 13, 2011

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Player of the Game
Tony Mitchell matched a season-high with 38 minutes and recorded his third double-double and the sixth of his career with 16 points and 11 rebounds in Wednesday’s win over South Carolina. Nearly half of UA’s 11 offensive rebounds came from Mitchell as he hauled in six. In terms of individual efficiency, Mitchell finished with a game-high rating of 19 for an average efficiency per possession of 0.294 for the 65 possessions he was on the floor for.

He finished the first half with 10 points on 5-of-8 shooting and converted on 3-of-6 attempts in the second half. Three of his field goals came via dunks as he now leads the team with 30 dunks on the season.

Play of the Game
Alabama jumped out to an early eight-point lead but much of the first half was played within two possessions until the waning moments of the period when Tony Mitchell brought the Coleman Coliseum crowd to its feet with one of his three dunks on the evening. With 1:05 left, Ben Eblen stole his third ball of the evening, tipped it to Charvez Davis who, in transition, found Mitchell on the elbow and the junior elevated for the emphatic dunk to give the Tide a seven-point, 26-19, lead.

Turning Point of the Game
Mitchell’s play of the day highlighted what was the turning point of the contest as UA held South Carolina without a field goal during the final 6:09 of the first half with the Gamecocks scoring only via two free throws with 30 seconds left. During the 5:39 dry streak, USC was 0-of-9 from the field and committed four turnovers.

Stat of the Game
For the second straight SEC game the Tide’s defense was the story as Alabama held South Carolina to just 0.66 points per possession. That average is the 10th lowest allowed by an SEC team this season and the lowest in an SEC game since Alabama held LSU to 0.65 points per possession on Jan. 27, 2010. It is just the 11th time since 2005-06 that an SEC defense has held a league opponent to fewer than 0.70 points per possession.

Lineup of the Game
Alabama used 12 different five-man units with seven of them outscoring USC. The combination of Tony Mitchell, JaMychal Green, Ben Eblen, Charvez Davis and Andrew Steele was the most productive by outscoring USC 8-2 during the 5:29 they were on the floor together. The starting five of Green, Mitchell, Trevor Releford and Chris Hines spent a game-high 9:49 on the court and held a 17-15 advantage.

Additional Game Notes
• Alabama starts the season 2-0 in SEC play for the first time since the 2001-02 season.
• South Carolina scored a season-low 47 points.
• The Crimson Tide defense held South Carolina to 28.6 percent shooting from the field, the Gamecocks' lowest of the season and the lowest in an SEC game since USC shot 27.6 percent against Tennessee on Feb. 6, 2010. Since the 2005-06 a team has shot below 30 percent in an SEC game only 15 times over a span of 982 games.
• Since 2001-02, only two other SEC opponents have shot less than 30 percent from the field. LSU shot 29.2 percent on Jan. 27, 2010, and Auburn converted on 28.6 percent on March 2, 2005.
• Alabama attempted a season-low three three-pointers and did not convert on one for the second time this season.
• South Carolina committed a season-high 20 turnovers off which UA scored 18 points.
• South Carolina is the fourth opponent this season to shoot less than 40 percent from the field and the sixth to score 50 or less points against UA.
• UA held a 40-18 advantage in points in the paint and has not been outscored in the paint this season. In 16 games, UA has outscored its opponents by a 385-350 margin.
• 70 percent of UA’s points came in the paint, its highest percentage of the season.
• Alabama outrebounded its 12th straight opponent and 14th this season.
• Alabama used an 8-0 run late in the half to earn the halftime lead. The 8-0 spurt was the Tide’s 25th run of 8-0 or greater this season.
• Alabama improved to 22-12 all-time against South Carolina and 11-2 against the Gamecocks in Tuscaloosa.
• Alabama is also now 275-89 in SEC games at Coleman Coliseum.

South Carolina +/-  Report
Mitchell  +14
Steele  +10
Davis  +8
Eblen  +6
Releford  +4
Hines  +3
Green  +0
Hillman  -2