|women's BASkEtBALL RESULTS
|Alabama 80, Troy 71
|Texas A&M 79, USC 61
Alabama Women’s Basketball Tops Troy, 80-71
TROY, Ala. – Junior Jasmine Robinson scored a game-high 25 points to lead the Alabama women’s basketball team to an 80-71 victory at Troy on Saturday. With the win, the Crimson Tide improves to 6-2 on the season while the loss drops the Trojans to 2-7 overall.
“We came out kind of sloppy, and we cannot do that,” said Alabama head coach Wendell Hudson. “I thought we stepped it up in the second half and played with great effort. This is a big win for us with it being on the road and coming off two losses.”
Joining Robinson in double figures was junior Shafontaye Myers and sophomore Daisha Simmons, who each added 15 points. Senior Meghan Perkins had a game-best 10 rebounds while Robinson and senior Jessica Merritt notched four steals apiece.
The game went back and forth over the first six minutes until a 7-0 run by Alabama, including five straight points from Myers, put the Tide on top 16-10. Alabama held onto the lead until the 5:25 mark when a layup by Troy junior Britney McCloud tied the game at 21. On the ensuing play, Robinson buried a three-pointer giving the Tide the lead again. The Trojans scored 10 of the next 14 points to take a 31-28 lead with 32 seconds remaining in the first. Just as it looked like Alabama wouldn’t get a shot off, Simmons drills a basket from beyond the arc, locking the game at 31 heading into the break.
The Tide opened the second half on a 7-2 run before Troy scored six unanswered for the 39-38 edge at the 15:20 mark. The Trojans led by as many as three and remained in front until a three from Robinson gave Alabama a 53-51 advantage with 10:51 to go. The Tide went on to score 11 of the next 16 points to take an eight-point lead, its largest of the game to that point. Troy pulled within three late in the game but was unable to get any closer.
For the game, Alabama was 29-for-84 (34.5 percent) but hit eight three-pointers. Troy finished 29-for-70 from the floor (41.4 percent), however the Trojans managed three of their 17 attempts from beyond the arc. Troy took advantage of its 13 trips to the free throw line, hitting 10 while the Tide was just 53.8 percent from the charity stripe (14-26).
“We have got to convert our free throws,” Hudson said. “If we do that, the game is over a long time ago.”
A&M Extends Win Streak, Defeats USC
LOS ANGELES - Kristi Bellock posted the first double-double of her career as Texas A&M won its sixth consecutive game with a 79-61 victory over USC today at the Galen Center.
The senior forward tallied a career-high 15 points and also tied her career high with 10 rebounds to help the Aggies overcome a slow start and finish with a strong second half. Kelsey Bone tied for team-high honors with 15 points and Courtney Walker also reached double figures with 14 points as the Aggies improved to 6-3.
"Bellock and Walker kept us in the ballgame in the first half," A&M head coach Gary Blaire said. "I thought they did an exceptional job. They played hard and they played smart. Usually they are the ones not invited to the press room. It is usually the leading scorer, but sometimes what you got to do is figure out who are the little cogs in the wheel that are getting this thing started."
The Aggies missed their first five shot attempts and spotted USC its largest lead at 5-0 to start the game. A&M eventually overcame its bout of cold shooting and rebounding as a 3-pointer by Tori Scott gave the Aggies their first lead at 22-21 with 6:28 remaining in the first half. Scott, who had tied her career high with seven points in A&M's previous outing, posted eight points in the first half.
The Aggies settled in and started making their shots, outshooting the Trojans, 35.5 percent to 28.6 percent in the half. Bellock scored the last four points of the half as she finished with a team-leading nine points en route to a 33-30 A&M lead heading into the break. Bellock also led the team with seven rebounds in the first half, although the Trojans had a significant 27-20 lead in total team rebounds.
"We were too impatient on our offense," Blair said about the team's first-half play. "Basically what hurt us was their rebounding in the first half. They were up seven on us at half. My 2, 3 and 1 players had two rebounds between the three of them. You've got to help the post players in there. We had to make some adjustments, which we did at the half."
A&M came out on fire in the second half, shooting 57.1 percent from the field over the last 20 minutes. The Aggies built their first double-digit lead of the game as Adrienne Pratcher connected on a jumper in the paint to give A&M a 46-35 lead with 14:02 remaining in the game.
"Pratcher came back and played a very good second half," Blair said. "That first 10 minutes was how she played last year against USC when she scored 22 points. The first half she was non-existent. The second half she did a great job for us."
A&M, which forced USC into 15 turnovers in the second half and outscored the Trojans 31-16 on points off turnovers for the came, continued to widen the gap, with Karla Gilbert going in for the layup to give the Aggies their largest lead at 71-46 with 6:48 remaining. Blair nearly cleared his bench late in the game and USC made a run to cut the margin to 17 points at 78-61 with only 15 seconds left on the clock.
"We were lucky that they were not very good on transition defense," Blair said. "It gave us a lot of easy baskets in the second half. Bone finally settled down and played a little bit smarter. I was proud of everything except for that last five or six minutes when I tried to empty my bench, and we didn't handle it very well. I want kids to play, but they need to learn to value a possession. If they want playing time, learn to value a possession.
"We are going to take the win. Any win on the road is a beautiful win."
Cassie Harberts had 19 points and 8 rebounds to lead USC, which finished with 44-38 edge in rebounding. The Trojans fall to 3-5 and suffer their fourth consecutive loss.
Texas A&M continues its four-game road swing as the Aggies participate in the World Vision Classic, Dec. 19-21 in Las Vegas. A&M will play three games at the six-team tournament, including the opener against former Big 12 opponent Kansas State Wednesday at 2:30 p.m. at Cox Pavilion.
Other teams participating in the tournament are Notre Dame, Old Dominion, UNLV and Alabama A&M.
"Now we get to go play a real smart Kansas State team, but what we are going to have to do is realize that our post players have to learn how to play within a crowd and we have to take the open shot that is given to us and then do a better job of rebounding the ball," Blair concluded.