TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Alabama forward Daniel Giddens hinted toward a big night from fellow big man Donta Hall earlier in the week when he stated the Crimson Tide needed to feed Hall more in the paint. Saturday, Alabama did just that as the Luverne, Ala., native recorded his fifth double-double of the season with 17 points and 11 rebounds against No. 15 Tennessee.
Hall’s effort helped Alabama blowout the Volunteers 78-50 in another statement win inside of Coleman Coliseum. The Crimson Tide is now 5-1 on the year against teams ranked in the top 25. Alabama’s only loss against a ranked opponent came in an 89-84 defeat to Minnesota where the Crimson Tide ended the game with three men on the court. The 28-point win Saturday was Alabama's largest margin of victory over a ranked opponent since 2005.
Alabama dominated in nearly every aspect of the game Saturday, outshooting Tennessee 57 percent to 28 percent while outrebounding the Volunteers 40-35. The Crimson Tide also held a 50-18 advantage in points in the paint.
Alabama improves to 16-9, 7-5 in the SEC while snapping a six-game winning streak for Tennessee (18-6, 8-4).
Here are some notes from the game:
Tide's top performers
Hall exited the game to a standing ovation with 8:02 remaining in the game. The junior finished the game 8 of 10 from the floor and also contributed on the defensive end with three blocks.
Collin Sexton also had a big night complete with several highlight plays on the fast break. The five-star freshman finished the night with 16 points, five rebounds and four assists. Fellow freshman John Petty was also in double digits with 14 points, including three 3s. Petty was 3 of 4 from beyond the arc.
It was over when
Herbert Jones hit a 3 from the top of the arc to give Alabama a 63-42 lead with 11:15 remaining. Before the shot, the freshman had scored Alabama’s past two baskets as the Crimson Tide blew the game open early in the second half.
After heading into the break with a 37-27 lead Alabama steadily increased its advantage making its first seven shots of the second half. Meanwhile, Tennessee opened the second half 2 of 6.
Alabama will finish off its two-game homestand when it hosts LSU on Tuesday at 8 p.m. on SEC Network. The game will be a rematch from a Jan. 13 meeting when the Crimson Tide beat the Tigers 74-66 in Baton Rouge, La.
LSU ranks second in the conference with a 48.2 field goal percentage. The Tigers are led by freshman point guard Tremont Waters who came into Saturday averaging a team-best 15 points and 5.9 assists per game. Waters, 5-foot-11, 167 pounds also came into Saturday leading the SEC with 2.2 steals per game. The Tigers also feature 6-foot-11 senior forward Duop Reath who is averaging 13.7 points and 5.4 rebounds per game.
Following the game against LSU, Alabama will play back-to-back road games starting with No. 24 Kentucky on Feb. 17 before facing off against No. 8 Auburn on Feb. 21.