By (Matthew Speakman)

Alabama women’s basketball continued its winning ways on Tuesday, defeating Georgia State 72-56 and improving to 4-0. Senior Nikki Hegstetter scored 14 points and grabbed nine rebounds in the win.

“It was just a good win for us, because reality hasn’t been what it is going to be,” said head coach Kristy Curry. “We are going to have to really understand that games are going to be close.”

Alabama continued to get balanced scoring across the board with four of their starting five being in double figures. Sophomores Karyla Middlebrook (12 points) and Meoshonti Knight (13 points) provided Alabama with pace by scoring from the back court. Sophomore Quanetria Bolton continued her hot start to the season, scoring 12 points and collecting five rebounds. Freshman Taylor Magee made her first appearance.

“I like the way we responded down the stretch and just stuck together,” Curry said. “We made plays when we needed to.”

Alabama struggled early in this game, trailing 20-14 at the end of the first quarter. That lead for Georgia State is the first time Alabama has been trailing at the end of any quarter this season The team had trouble dealing with the Panthers’ 2-3 zone and physiciality in the early stages of the game. The Crimson Tide only made six of their first 18 shots in the game.

Alabama responded to the early deficite by outscoring Georgia State 18-8 in the second quarter. Alabama then cruised to a 16 point victory, outscoring their opponent 40-28 in the second half.

“You cannot simulate that kind of pressure in practice,” Hegstetter said. “I think these games really give us a chance to simulate those kind of pressure situations and really help us prepare for games coming up.”

Alabama continued their dominant defensive play by forcing over 20 turnovers in yet another game. The Tide also held Georgia State to under 40 percent (33.3) shooting in this game. No team has shot over 35 percent in a game against Alabama this year.

The team was able to share the wealth as a team. Along with their four players in double figures, they recorded 15 assists as a team. That gave them a positive assist-to-turnover ration as they only turned the ball over 13 times.

Alabama struggled from the field in this game, only shooting 36.8 percent (26-68) and 17.6 percent (3-17) from three point range. Alabama’s bench failed to get as much production in this game, only scoring 16 points as a unit.

“We have to realize our mistakes, and I thought that tonight, down the stretch, we were able to do that,” Curry said. “We nearly won by 20 points, and that is a good thing.”

Alabama will travel to Reno, Nevada, to participate in the Nugget Classic with their first game coming against Middle Tennessee on Nov 2.

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Source:: The Crimson White Sports