In college sports, rivalries are amplified due to fan’s personal connections to the schools. Residents of the state of Alabama see the rivalry between Alabama and Auburn everywhere. Being the two largest schools in the state, most people either cheer for one or the other and every sport is important.
This Sunday, Feb. 7, the women’s basketball teams of Alabama and Auburn will add yet another chapter in this historic match up, with Auburn currently on a two game win streak against the Crimson Tide. This rivalry is not only important to the fans but the players as well.
“It is time,” said sophomore Hannah Cook. “It is time to
beat them on our home court.”
In last year’s
game between these two teams in Tuscaloosa, a brawl broke out near the
end of the first half, resulting in two players being ejected. That installment in the rivalry saw Alabama
pick up a 51-50 victory over the Tigers.
The hatred in this rivalry extends past just football. The
fans want to see their team beat the other in anything, whether its women’s
basketball, men’s golf, softball or baseball. This game, which is Alabama and
Auburn’s second matchup of the year, falls on a Sunday afternoon, where the
crowd is expected to come out in numbers.
The game is also the Crimson Tide’s pink game, where they
honor and support those who are going through breast cancer or those who have
lost their lives to the disease. For Alabama, this game is extra special for
that reason. This game reminds them that it is more than just a game and can
make a difference.
“Cancer has touched all of us,” Curry said. “Especially the
different types of female cancers. None of us have anyone that we don’t know
who has been affected. It has touched all of us. We just want to do our part to
raise awareness and give back to the cause in any way we can.”
Alabama enters this game coming off of a win at home against
Ole Miss, where it improved its record to 14-9 overall, and 3-7 in the SEC. In
its last matchup against the Auburn Tigers, the team fell short on the road,
losing to the Tigers 72-59.
“We are excited to be at home on a Sunday,” Curry said. “It
is our pink game, and that has touched everyone in the locker room in many
different ways. We need to come out with a lot of energy and effort and just
defend our home court.”
On the other side, Auburn enters this game ahead of the
Crimson Tide in the SEC standings, having a 5-5 record in conference play and a
15-8 record overall. The Tigers are led by head coach Terri Williams-Flournoy,
who is in her sixth season as general of the team. She currently has a 194-156
record overall, including three tournament appearances and two sweet sixteens.
The series is currently at 47-36 in favor of the Auburn
Tigers, who have won two straight against Alabama. Curry does not let this
rivalry go to her head, as she believes it just a game on the schedule.
“The big thing for me is that it is just the next game,”
said Curry. “To grow as a team and win two league games in one week. Those
things are important. We just have so much respect for their program and so
much respect for the rivalry.”
For Alabama, it is are looking to continue to build off of
its most recent SEC win and continue to improve each game. Sophomore Meoshonti
Knight belives this game is important for the team to continue to get better.
“It is really exciting for them to come back to our place,”
Knight said. “So we can have that crowd and everybody getting into it.
Alabama and Auburn will compete for in-state bragging rights
on Feb. 7 at 1 pm CT in Foster Auditorium.
Source:: The Crimson White Sports