Alabama 67, LSU 56
A terrible start on the road against a Southeastern Conference
rival is no longer enough to rattle JaMychal Green and his Alabama
Green had 18 points and Alabama beat LSU 67-56 on Thursday
night, giving the Crimson Tide 12 wins in 14 games while extending
the Tigers’ losing streak to nine.
”We never got frustrated,” Green said of Alabama’s 0-for-9
start from the field. ”I knew deep down when the second half came
we were going to make a run and finish the game out.”
The victory meant that for the first time in five seasons,
Alabama (17-8, 9-2 SEC) will have a winning conference record. The
Tide also can clinch the Western Division with a victory at home
against Arkansas on Saturday.
Although LSU (10-16, 2-9) has not won since beating Arkansas on
Jan. 12, Alabama coach Anthony Grant wasn’t about to criticize his
players for failing to deliver the type of blowout they posted in a
70-46 triumph over the Tigers earlier this season in
”Any road win is a good win,” Grant said. ”LSU came out with
great energy and give them credit. I thought they came out and they
hit first tonight … and kind of knocked us back a little bit, but
I thought our guys responded well.”
Trevor Releford had 15 points for Alabama, finally sending LSU
fans to the exits with his driving floater as he was fouled that
put the Tide ahead 65-56 with 2:12 left. Tony Mitchell added 13
points, snapping his string of four-straight games with 20 or more.
His most notable play was a missed one-handed jam attempt that
bounced off the rim so hard it went out of bounds near the Alabama
bench on the fly.
Mitchell was flexing his right hand afterward but remained in
”It wasn’t one of our better games,” Grant said. ”We turned
the ball over unnecessarily and tried to make some plays that
weren’t there, but you have to be proud of your guys that they
found the resolve to come away with the win.”
Ralston Turner scored 17 points and Malcolm White 14 for LSU,
which stayed close most of the game but was done in by 10 missed
free throws and 17 turnovers that the Tide converted into 30
points. Garrett Green added 10 points for the Tigers.
”For the most part, it was turnovers,” LSU coach Trent Johnson
said. ”Some of them were unforced and some of them was the
constant pressure tending to wear on you. The positives were I felt
Ralston did a good job of keeping us into things.”
Andrew Steele scored 10 points for Alabama, which outscored LSU
32-26 inside and has now outscored all 25 of its opponents in the
paint this season. The Tide also lowered its already impressive
scoring defense average of 58.4 points.
Alabama now needs only one win in its final five regular season
games to top last season’s win total of 17.
What wound up being Alabama’s 100th all-time win over LSU looked
like anything but a slam dunk early on. A little more than 6
minutes into the game, Alabama was shooting 10 percent (1 for 10)
with three turnovers.
That allowed LSU to jump out to a 9-2 lead, with Turner scoring
seven of those points.
LSU led 20-12 on Chris Bass’ weaving, end-to-end dribble for a
layup, but that was as big as the Tigers’ lead would get.
JaMychal Green dunked twice, once as he was fouled, then stole
the ball from Andre Stringer and went the other way for a
fast-break layup during a 9-2 run that pulled the Tide to
”I knew coming in it was going to be a physical game,” said
Green, who was assessed a technical foul for a scuffle with White
in the teams’ previous meeting. ”I just had to keep my head and
just keep playing on the defensive end.”
The Tigers managed to hold the lead until Releford hit a pair of
driving floaters and Steele drained a 3 during a 7-0 spurt that put
the Tide in front 28-26 with 4:44 left in the half.
Alabama then closed the half with a 36-31 lead when Chris Hines
scored as he was fouled in the final seconds.
The Tide had its first double-digit lead when Mitchell’s driving
floater in the lane made it 44-34, but LSU responded with a 7-0 run
highlighted by Turner’s 3 and Aaron Dotson’s driving layup as he
was fouled. LSU later got as close as 50-48 when Stringer was
fouled attempting a 3 and hit all three free throws.
JaMychal Green then hit a jump hook and Mitchell followed with a
3 to push Bama’s lead back to 55-48, and the closest LSU got after
that was 60-56 when Matt Derenbecker hit a 3 from the corner with
4:01 to go.