Women's Basketball Wraps up Home Slate with No. 25 South Carolina
Feb. 18, 2012
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - The women's basketball team (12-15, 2-11 SEC) will play its final home game of the 2011-12 season on Sunday when it hosts No. 25 South Carolina (19-7, 8-5 SEC) in Foster Auditorium. The game will air live on Fox Sports South beginning at 2 p.m. CT.
"We really came out and played hard against Kentucky, and we will expect to do that again against South Carolina," said Alabama head coach Wendell Hudson. "As with our last few opponents, we have already seen them once, so that has definitely helped us to prepare. I think we are a different basketball team than we were the last time we played, and we are looking forward to this final home game of the season."
Prior to the game, Ericka Russellwill be honored for her contributions to the team as part of the Senior Day festivities. Russell played her final game for the Tide on January 15, receiving a medical disqualification two days later, but was, and has remained, an instrumental part of the team.
"When you ask the team, `If you were going to follow somebody, who would it be,' Ericka's name is the first name that always pops up," said Hudson. "She's been that model that we've used many times to show that this is the person you need to follow. She is the epitome of a student-athlete."
Sunday's game is the second meeting between Alabama and South Carolina this season and 30th overall. South Carolina has won the previous four meetings in the series.
In this season's earlier meeting, which took place on January 1, the Gamecocks came away with a 68-42 victory in Columbia. For the game, Alabama was 37.5 percent from the floor (18-for-48), while South Carolina finished at 46.6 percent (27-for-58). In addition, the Gamecocks pulled down 38 rebounds compared to the Tide's 22 boards. South Carolina had 41 points produced from its bench, while Alabama had just four.
Sophomore guard Jasmine Robinsonled all scorers with 16 points, all of which were scored in the second half. For the Gamecocks, junior Ieasia Walker led with 12 points.
Alabama enters Sunday's game having won two of its last three contests, most recently posting a 77-75 victory over seventh-ranked Kentucky on Thursday. It was Alabama's first victory over a top-10 opponent since February 10, 2000, when the Tide beat No. 7 LSU, 72-68. Robinson scored 17 points and grabbed six rebounds to lead the Tide against the Wildcats. In addition to Robinson's 17 points, Perkins scored 14 points and junior Kyra Crosby added 10 for Alabama. Junior Jessica Merritt grabbed seven boards to lead the Tide in rebounding. Freshman Aneesah Danielsgrabbed five boards to go along with nine points. Alabama played its best half of basketball all season in the first 20 minutes of the game, shooting 70 percent from the floor, while holding Kentucky to 33.3 percent of its attempts.
Robinson continues to lead Alabama in scoring on the season with 11.3 points per game. She is followed by Perkins, who averages 9.6 points per contest. Perkins is also the Tide's leader in rebounds with 5.4 boards per game.
South Carolina has dropped two of its last three games, most recently being edged by No. 18 Georgia, 61-59, in Columbia. Despite the loss, the Gamecocks hit eight three-pointers in the game, but managed just 13 additional shots from the floor. Seniors La'Keisha Sutton and Markeshia Grant led South Carolina in scoring with 20 points and 11 points, respectively.
Grant and Sutton also lead the team on the season in scoring as Grant contributes a team-best 11.3 points per game, while Sutton adds another 10.0 points per contest.