FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Against Arkansas, Hannah Barber had arguably her greatest moment in her five years with the Crimson Tide.
Alabama found themselves in a tied game late inside Bud Walton Arena. Arkansas had just hit a three to tie the game, and with 18 seconds left, head coach Kristy Curry called timeout.
The stakes couldn’t have been much higher. Both teams entered the night at 5-4 in the SEC, tied for fifth and just a game behind fourth place. A win, and you’re one step closer to a double-bye to open the SEC tournament.
Alabama needed the win. Coming off a rough loss to No. 3 LSU at home SCORE, and dealing with a plethora of injuries, the Tide’s season had reached a crossroads.
Loyal McQueen caught the inbound pass, dribbling left. Barber came off a screen from Brittany Davis at the top of the key, leaving her wide open. Her three? Nothing but net.
“It was a great pass from Loyal,” said Barber.
“For her to be able to penetrate, she was kinda in a zone, and get the defense to collapse like that, it basically left me wide open.”
Arkansas’ attempts, with just 9 seconds remaining, resulted in a missed three and a turnover to seal the game. Alabama 69, Razorbacks 66.
“It seemed like our backs were against the wall, and they just continued to fight and stay together,” said Curry after the game.
The Crimson Tide were saddled with 28 foul calls against them Thursday night, their most of the entire season. Five Alabama players ended the game with four fouls.
“Certainly don’t want any problems talking about officiating, but we haven’t been in this situation,” Curry said.
“A little bizarre at times tonight, but our kids certainly fought through it.”
Brittany Davis had a big night against the Razorbacks, scoring 22 points, 4 rebounds and a pair of steals. When Alabama went down 8-3 early in the game, it was back-to-back triples from Davis that helped the Tide regain momentum.
Jada Rice also played a big part in the win, knocking down all six of her free throws en route to a 12-point, 7-rebound performance.
JaMya Mingo-Young has been “medically disqualified” and will miss the remainder of the season, according to a team press release.
Megan Abrams remains out with an unknown injury.
With the win, Alabama takes sole possession of fifth place in the SEC and improves to 16-5 on the season. They’ll head home to take on No. 1 South Carolina, Sunday, Jan. 23.
The game will be broadcast on ESPN2. Tip is scheduled for 12 p.m. CT.