The Alabama Crimson Tide’s stout defense and home court advantage proved to be as good as advertised, as the Western Division champions held the Georgia Bulldogs to 57 points and improved to 16-0 at home this season. Both squads exited Coleman Coliseum at 20-10 overall.
After surrendering an early lead, the Red and Black remained within striking distance but failed to close the deal, ultimately falling by an eight-point margin. The Athenians turned the ball over 16 times to the Tide’s eight giveaways, and the home team collected eight steals to the visitors’ two.
Turnovers were the story of a game in which the Fox Hounds otherwise generally played well. Georgia shot over 40 per cent from the field (19 of 46), right at 50 per cent from beyond the arc (4 of 8), and nearly 90 per cent from the free throw line (15 of 17), outshooting Alabama in each category. Trey Thompkins played through the pain of a toe injury to lead the Bulldogs with 15 points and ten rebounds, and the Classic City Canines only narrowly lost the battle of the boards by a slim 30-28 margin.
This would have been a nice win to have had, but it wasn’t a win the Red and Black needed. Alabama, and not Georgia, began the day as the team on the bubble, and the Hoop Dogs’ NCAA Tournament prospects suffered no appreciable damage as a result of their loss on the road in a game they were expected to lose. While a triumph in Tuscaloosa would have solidified the Athenians’ tourney resume, the resume they had compiled already essentially assured them of a spot in the field of 68.
Therefore, let us focus on the opportunities before Mark Fox’s club instead of being bothered by a missed chance to add a jewel to a crown that already sparkled as much as necessary. Rather than fret over today’s result, Bulldog Nation should turn its attention to Knoxville and root hard for the Kentucky Wildcats to take down the Tennessee Volunteers tomorrow. Tip-off in Thompson-Boling Arena is set for noon, and the contest will be televised on CBS.