Author: CW Sports Staff

Alabama holds off Mississippi State’s late comeback

By outreach@cw.ua.edu (Cody Estremera) With 1:17 left in the game Alabama was tied with Mississippi State. Freshman John Petty threw up a three-point shot that clanged off the rim. Forward Braxton Key caught it and went up with both hands, dropping in the go-ahead basket, sending Coleman Coliseum into a frenzy. “Coaches have been challenging me to get more offensive rebounds,” Key said. “They think I’m an athletic guy who can get more offensive rebounds and help the team. I saw an opportunity and no one boxed me out, just to make a play for my team.” Alabama’s 68-62 win on the season didn’t come as easy as the first half looked. The Crimson Tide built up a 20-point lead at one point in the first half, going into halftime up 19. The team was rolling, shooting over 50 percent from the floor and shooting 50 percent from three. Then the second half started. Mississippi State came out firing in the second half. The Bulldogs scored six of the first eight points in the second half, chipping away at Alabama’s lead. By the time Alabama took its first timeout of the second half, Mississippi State had cut the lead down to just nine. “There was not as much ball movement,” Johnson said. “We didn’t do a great job on the boards. Peters got away from us a couple of...

Read More

Men’s tennis stays perfect against Samford and Chattanooga

By outreach@cw.ua.edu (Zach Fidel) University of Alabama men’s tennis defeated both Samford and Chattanooga on Saturday. With the two victories, the Crimson Tide is off to its best start since 2008. Alabama got off to a slow start in its first match against Samford. In doubles play, the Crimson Tide dropped first three games. The freshman duo of Patrick Kaukovalta and Grant Stuckey had never played together, and Kaukovalta was playing in his first match of his career. Sophomores Thibault Cancel and Alexey Nesterov kick started the afternoon for the Crimson Tide as they won their match 6-2. The momentum of the match shifted when Edson Ortiz and Mazen Osama mounted an energetic comeback win after being down 4-1. Ortiz, the sophomore from Mexico, was the more energetic of the two motivating his teammate with words of encouragement. Alabama didn’t look back when it was time for singles play. It shutout Samford 6-0 which resulted in an overall final score of 7-0. Coach George Husak was impressed on how his team reacted after a rough start in doubles play. With no senior on the squad, this was the perfect test for this young team. “Samford provided a tremendous challenge for us in doubles, and after we fought back to get that point the guys really rallied together,” Husak said. “With this young team we as a coaching staff try...

Read More

Women’s basketball falls to Texas A&M

By outreach@cw.ua.edu (James Ogletree) Alabama forward Ashley Knight had a step on the Texas A&M player defending her, and Knight’s teammate, guard Shaquera Wade, noticed. She dished the ball to Knight, who converted the layup. They were Knight’s first two points of the game, and didn’t do much to close an 18-point deficit to the 16th-ranked Aggies, who won the game 73-54. Nonetheless, Alabama forward Ashley Williams, dressed in gray sweats, sprang to her feet, rewarding Knight with enthusiastic applause and a cheer of “Niiiice!” Williams, the team’s unquestioned leader, missed her first game of the season as she recovers from a collision with a Mississippi State player on Sunday. Head coach Kristy Curry said the team failed to replace Williams’ production as well as expected, but the most prominent loss was her leadership. “She leads by her energy and her effort and she also is a really vocal leader for us,” Curry said. “We were completely mute; I was disappointed. I’ve asked these kids the past few days to step up and be uncomfortable a little bit and be more vocal… When somebody’s down, you gotta step up more than that.” Midway through the third quarter, as the Aggies used a 13-0 run to pad the lead they held for all but 16 seconds of the game, the Coleman Coliseum crowd fell as quiet as it has been...

Read More

John Petty’s big scoring night pushes Alabama past Auburn

By outreach@cw.ua.edu (Matthew Speakman) A five-star talent produced a five-star game for Alabama. Time after time, freshman guard John Petty, a five-star recruit in high school, ran off a screen, caught the ball, and threw up a three-pointer no matter how many people were guarding him. Most of the night, it went in. Petty caught fire early and finished with 27 points on 8-of-13 shooting from beyond the arc to power Alabama to a 76-71 win over No. 17 Auburn, ending the Tigers’ 14-game winning streak. On a night where Alabama was missing its leading scorer in freshman guard Collin Sexton, Petty took the reins of the offense. “I just knew I had to step up,” Petty said. ‘We all knew we had to step up, since a lot of our scoring – Collin Sexton – was out tonight. I came out and made a couple of threes and just felt great.” Five of Petty’s eight three pointers came in the second half, with four of those coming in the first seven minutes. He added a pull-up jumper to bring his second-half point total to 18. He connected on a three just 16 seconds into the second half. From there, he felt like he could make everything. “When I hit about four or five, I’m fully in the zone,” Petty said. “That’s when it’s really feeling good. So, I...

Read More

Sam Messina returns to the ice for Alabama

By outreach@cw.ua.edu (Ehsan Kassim) One sneeze while sitting on his bed in his Tuscaloosa apartment changed the course of Sam Messina’s life forever on Sept. 21, 2016. Messina, a senior advertising major and a forward for the club hockey team, had just returned home from eating lunch at Mugshots when the sneeze hit. Messina passed out; doctors told him that he had technically had a mini-stroke. Messina’s girlfriend took him to DCH, where he said he sat in the emergency room for four hours. Doctors told him his brain was bleeding, and he was sent to Birmingham for further testing. After doctors in Birmingham told him they could not do surgery on him because of the risk, he went home to Chicago to get a second opinion. “I got lucky and I got into the University of Chicago for a second opinion,” Messina said. “One of the best neurologists out there, he looked at it and said he could take it out. He said he’s done it plenty of times before and he just gave me an option if I wanted surgery or not. He said if I did the surgery, I would not have to worry about it again.” Messina had to drop out of college for a semester, and after multiple surgeries, doctors were able to remove a clot from his brain that caused him to have...

Read More