Crimson Tide Defeats Alabama State in Montgomery, 72-54


Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Kennedy Winston

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By JOHN ZENOR, AP Sports Writer

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) -- Kennedy Winston scored 21 points and Chuck Davis had 18 points and nine rebounds to lead No. 18 Alabama to a 72-54 victory over Alabama State on Tuesday night.

The Crimson Tide (7-1), the nation's top scoring team, was held to a season-low in points but led by double digits for the final 33 minutes.

Reserve George Savage had 14 points, making 4-of-7 3-pointers, to lead the Hornets (1-4). Alabama State managed to slow the tempo enough to hold the Tide 20 points under its season average, but shot only 33 percent from the floor.
Winston made 4-of-6 3-pointers and had six rebounds and five assists.

Earnest Shelton had 14 -- 12 in the first half -- and Ronald Steele had 11 points and six assists. Jermareo Davidson added eight points, nine rebounds and four blocked shots for Alabama.

The Tide had survived a 102-101, three-overtime marathon at Charlotte on Saturday but mostly coasted through its first visit to Alabama State. This was still the closest of the teams' five meetings, with Alabama winning the previous four by at least 24 points in Tuscaloosa.

Jermaine Smith and Alexander Oliver had 10 points apiece for Alabama State, while leading scorer Kevin Spicer was just 2-of-14 for four points.

Winston and Shelton combined for 23 points and seven assists in the first half as the Tide built a 41-22 halftime lead. Davis then opened the second half with a basket and free throw for Alabama's biggest lead. The Hornets started a 12-4 run with Jermaine Smith's 3-pointer, making it 46-34.

Winston answered with a steal, an assist and a 3-pointer and Davis converted another three-point play to push it back to 54-34.

After the Hornets pulled back to within 13 midway through the half, Winston hit a 3-pointer and drove for another basket to end any threat.

The Tide shot 54 percent and had 19 assists on 28 baskets.