Tide Falls to Rebels in First Conference Game of the Season 71-61
Saturday, January 07, 2006
By Kyle Murphy, UA Media Relations
TUSCALOOSA After a strong first half which saw the Alabama Crimson Tide go into the locker room with a seven point lead, the Ole Miss Rebels bounced back in the second half to post a 71-61 victory in the two teams first Southeastern Conference showdown of the year on Saturday evening.
After trailing 30-23 at the half, the Rebels used a big momentum swing and a strong inside presence from center Dwayne Curtis to score 48 second half points and improve its SEC record to 1-0.
The Tide would lose more than just its first conference game, as senior forward and leading scorer Chuck Davis would exit the game midway through the first half with an injury to his right knee and not return. Ole Miss would take advantage of the absence of the Tide’s leader by pounding the ball inside to Curtis, who posted a double-double with 21 points and 14 rebounds.
Ole Miss had three other players score in double figures Saturday. Forward Londrick Nolen had 15 points, guard Bam Doyne had 13 points, and point guard Todd Abernethy had 11.
Alabama had three players score in double figures tonight, including freshman guard Brandon Hollinger, who posted a career high with 13 points. Hollinger was five-for-ten from the field including going three-for-five from beyond the three point line. Center Jermareo Davidson led all players with 25 points. He shot eight-for-fourteen from the field and nine-for-eleven from the free throw line. Freshman Richard Hendrix added 12 for the Crimson Tide.
“I was proud of our players tonight because they played hard,” said Alabama head coach Mark Gottfried. “We have to just keep fighting and overcome this loss.”
The loss drops Alabama’s overall record to 7-6 and 0-1 in conference play. The Crimson Tide continues SEC play with a tough two game road trip that includes a trip to Auburn on Wednesday night and a trip to Rupp Arena in Lexington, Kentucky to take on the 21st ranked Kentucky Wildcats on Saturday. The Auburn game will be televised by Jefferson Pilot and tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Wednesday night. The Kentucky game will be televised by CBS and is set for a noon tip-off on Saturday.