Alyssia Brewer had 20 points and 10 rebounds to help No. 5 Tennessee beat Alabama 74-67 on Thursday night, surviving a scare against the Southeastern Conference's last-place team.
The league-leading Lady Vols (23-2, 11-1) struggled to shake a team that hadn't beaten them since 1984. Alabama (10-15, 2-11), which opened with an entirely new starting five, closed to within 54-49 midway through the second half.
Then, Tennessee finally kicked into gear with 10 straight points en route to a 67-51 lead on Alicia Manning's basket with 6:13 left. The Lady Vols missed five straight free throws and made just 11 of 24 attempts from the line to help keep it close.
Shekinna Stricklen had 14 points and Angie Bjorklund added 13 for Tennessee, which forced 24 turnovers.
Tide freshman Celiscia Farmer had a career-high 21 points in her first start on 10-of-15 shooting.