TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Alabama reached a new level of dominance with their ninth-straight win against Auburn on Sunday night.
The 69-46 victory set a new program record for consecutive wins against the Tigers, something the team was quick to point out.
“We own this state,” said Aaliyah Nye after the game.
Head coach Kristy Curry called Alabama’s recent school-wide, in-state dominance “contagious.”
“That’s what the expectation always is. I think when you see someone else do it, it just infuses you with energy and passion to go do it for them. They did it for us.”
Perhaps the most contagious aspect of the Tide’s performance against Auburn came in the scoring department. Four Alabama players reached double figures in yet another display of the team’s improved depth from last season.
Brittany Davis led the Tide with 18 points (7-14) and a career-high 17 rebounds, her second straight double-double and 24th game this season in scoring ten-or-more points. She also managed to add 4 assists and 3 steals onto her historic night.
Nye scored 11 points (4-9), including back-to-back triples that helped Alabama begin to pull away in the second quarter.
Sarah Ashlee Barker overcame 7 turnovers to score 11 points (4-8) and record 5 assists in the win, while Ryan Cobbins scored 10 points on an efficient 5-6 night from the field.
“We know we’re at our best when we can share the basketball… I just think they have confidence in each other,” said Curry.
Alabama also managed to hold Auburn to their second-lowest scoring performance of the season, thanks in large part to Curry’s signature defensive shifts.
The Tigers shot just 27.4% from the field in the game and went 0-16 from three on the night.
“What I thought we did today was be able to show them different looks. We were in our press just to make sure we were containing and keeping them in front. It made them more hesitant, I thought, in their half-court offense when we can get it to 20, 21, 19 on the [shot] clock then they start things,” Curry said.
Kharyssa Richardson was Auburn’s leading scorer with 15 points and 8 rebounds, while Aicha Coulibaly scored 13 and added 10 rebounds in the loss.
“To hold them 0-16 from three is bizarre. I still think that we gave too many open looks and we gave Coulibaly 20 shots, but over the course of time we were able to get enough stops and covert those in transition,” Curry said.
Auburn head coach Johnnie Harris called her team’s performance “disappointing,” citing a departure from the team’s plan coming in.
“Our game plan was to throw it inside, we had post players open, and we couldn’t get the ball inside. Just really disappointed in our effort tonight,” Harris said.
Megan Abrams continues to play limited minutes after returning from a hamstring injury. She scored 5 points in 8 minutes played against Auburn, up from 6 minutes played against Kentucky. Abrams is believed to be on a minutes restriction.
With the win, Alabama improved to 19-6 on the season and 8-4 in the SEC. They now sit just one game behind Ole Miss for the fourth spot – and a double-bye in the SEC tournament – having played one more game than the Rebels.
Alabama will take on Vanderbilt at home on Thursday, Feb. 16. Tip is set for 6 p.m. CT.
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