Alabama smothers Gamecocks on the road for key victory

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Alabama smothers Gamecocks on the road for key victory

CW/ Hannah Saad

CW/ Hannah Saad

CW/ Hannah Saad

CW/ Hannah Saad

Ben Stansell, Assistant Sports Editor

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Alabama picked up a 68-62 road win over South Carolina on Tuesday night, smothering the Gamecocks defensively. The Crimson Tide limited South Carolina to just 21.1 percent from beyond the arc, its lowest three-point percentage of the season.

Alabama improved to 17-11 and 8-7 in the SEC with the win.

“We haven’t won many games like this,” coach Avery Johnson said. “We’ve had leads and relinquished leads. We haven’t been able to hit that next gear. We’ve made some adjustments in our practices and I saw a really energized team in the last five to seven minutes of the game. They were able to re-calibrate, re-focus and fortunately we were able to make some plays at the end of the game that helped us win.”

Kira Lewis Jr. led the way for Alabama offensively, finishing with 17 points while also tying his career-high in rebounds with five. Donta Hall recorded 15 points and 10 rebounds, securing his SEC-leading 12th double-double of the season. Riley Norris provided a strong presence off the bench, scoring 11 points in the second half.

The Crimson Tide led for the majority of the game before allowing the Gamecocks to storm back and take a 56-52 lead with six minutes left. However, instead of folding, Alabama went on an 11-1 run and sealed the game with good defense.

Alabama will return to Coleman Coliseum to host LSU on Saturday. Tipoff is scheduled for 11 a.m. CT and the seniors will be recognized before the game.