NASSAU, Bahamas – The Alabama women’s basketball team battled the 17th-ranked Utah Utes on Monday, losing 93-86 in the opening game of the Tide of the Baha Mar Pink Flamingo Championship.
Alabama featured four players scoring in double digits Brittany Davis scored 23 points to lead all goalscorers and added five assists and three rebounds. Aaliyah Nye scored her second straight game in double figures and went 5 of 7 from beyond the arc for a 17-point game. Loyal McQueen and Megan Abrams both scored 15 points in the game.
Utah was led by Gian Kneepkens with 21 points and four rebounds. Kneepkens made 8 of 8 free throws in the game as the Utes shot 27 of 28 from the charity streak.
“So it was a fun game. The result wasn’t that fun, but I loved our team today. I thought we did so many good things throwing line. We were 12 of 14 and they were 27 of 28. I thought we missed a few late shots that we usually take and I thought Aalyiah Nye being lost for the game hurts. We just couldn’t get enough stops without putting them on the free throw line. To play the No. 17 team in the country, it was just a very different effort than South Florida, which I believe is a tournament team. I told our team a few minutes ago that this schedule was put in place to make January less difficult and more prepared. I loved who they were trying to be today and now at midnight we have to let that go and prepare for the next one. That’s the joy of the game. The game just keeps passing and it’s all in our reaction when there’s another opportunity to play that fast.
- Davis (23) and Nye (17) scored 40 of the Crimson Tide’s 86 points in the game
- The 23-point performance marked Davis’ third 20+ point game this season as she led all players off the floor
- Nye won her second straight game in double figures when she scored 5 of 7 from long range
- Utah made 27 of 28 free throws in the game, including knocking down 15 of 15 in the second half
- Alabama forced 21 turnovers to speed the game up in points from turnovers 25-17
- UA also led the Utes with three pointers, 8-6, points from the bench, 32-28, and blocks, 4-1
- Alabama knocked down the first eight points of the game, with Nye and Barker hitting threes and Davis running in to a layup after stealing from Barker
- The hot start continued as Alabama built their lead to 21-14 with 3:20 remaining in the first quarter
- Consecutive three pointers from Nye and a pair of jump shots from Loyal McQueen gave Alabama a 31-23 advantage at the end of the opening stanza
- Nye hit her third straight shot from long range to open the second quarter for the Tide
- UA extended their biggest lead of the half (40-29) with just over seven minutes to play, but a 12-2 run by the Utes in the next 3:12 made it a one-point game (42- 41).
- Alabama ended the half with a 52-48 advantage, with Davis (15) and Nye (12) scoring 27 of Tide’s first-half points while McQueen added 10 points
- Nye went from long range 4-of-5 while Davis added four assists at halftime
- Nye opened the scoring again for Tide, scoring the first three points in the third quarter to assist UA on a 7-2 run (59-50).
- Utah jumped out of a 61-55 UA advantage to score six unanswered goals to tie the game at 61-61 at the 5:30 mark before eventually taking their first lead of the game at 66-65 , leaving 2:38 in the quarter
- The Utes would overtake the tide 9-3 to end the third quarter with a 75-68 lead
- Six straight points over Megan Abrams put UA in play within five (81-76 with 6:52
- Alabama would close by five points (87-82) by 1:48, but the Utes would have a seven-point lead by the end of the game
- Alabama meets Wake Forest on the final day of the Pink Flamingo Championship on Wednesday, November 23 at 10 a.m. CT
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