COLUMBIA, S.C.- The 2017 Women’s basketball national champion South Carolina Gamecocks faced off against the Alabama Crimson Tide Sunday in each schools second SEC matchup.
Alabama last time our trailed by as many as twenty points to the Florida Gators, but found a way to come back and pick up a seven point victory.
This improved the overall record to 9-5 and got the Tide off to a clean 1-0 start in conference play.
USC on the flip side came into the ballgame at 9-4 after picking up a win against the Lady Aggies of Texas A&M 60-57.
This close win for the Gamecocks also marked their fifth consecutive victory, bringing them into Sunday’s matchup with Bama.
In the first quarter in their last matchup against the Florida Gators the Crimson Tide’s offense couldn’t have played much worse only scoring eight points.
Although on Sunday UA didn’t score their first points until nearly seven minutes into the game a new season low.
South Carolina on the other hand jumped out to a 9-0 lead and commanded the entire first period, taking a 15-6 advantage after the first ten minutes.
In the second quarter Alabama’s offense picked up a bit cutting the lead back to six, 19-13, four minutes into the quarter.
The two squads would trade baskets down the stretch in the second period until the Gamecocks went on a quick 4-0 near the end of the quarter to take their biggest lead of the game 31-21.
USC would retain a ten point lead heading into the halftime break, 33-23.
To begin the third quarter the Gamecocks would only add to their lead, extending it out to fourteen just one minute in.
With six and a half minutes to go in the period Alabama brought the lead back to nine at 41-32 after a pair of Jasmine Walker free throws.
Those two knockdowns from the charity stripe were the first two points of a personal and team 7-0 run to cut the lead all the way back to just four 41-37 with five minutes left in the third.
With 3:15 to go the Crimson Tide would get the lead all the way down to one point off a nice in the paint bucket from Ashley night.
South Carolina extended the lead back out to three to close out the quarter, 47-44.
Another slow offense start to the period for Alabama allowed the Gamecocks to retake an eight point lead 52-44 with 7:48 left in the game.
In the next minute of play the Crimson Tide would riffle back with a 5-0 to make the lead just three points once again.
The schools exchanged baskets once again, and with 2:51 to go the scoreboard read 58-55 a three point advantage for USC still.
With one minute to go Alabama got within closets striking distance again cutting the lead to one, and with just under a minute they would take their first lead of the game 59-58 off of a Jasmine Walker jumper.
Although Bama wouldn’t find the scoreboard again in the game allowing a made field goal along with two free throws in the last thirty-five seconds, giving South Carolina the last laugh and the victory 62-59.
This hard fought loss brings the Crimson Tide to 9-6 on the year and an even 1-1 in conference play.
Alabama will return home to take on bitter rival Auburn this upcoming Thursday at 7 pm CT, as they look to rebound from Sunday’s loss.
Player of the Game: Junior, Guard Cierra Johnson; 19 pts, 6 Rebs, 4-6 FTs.
(Photo courtesy of Alabama Athletics)