Alabama tops depleted Tennessee 73-68 with late run

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) — Jahvon Quinerly scored 18 points and Noah Gurley added a season-high 15 to help No. 19 Alabama beat 14th-ranked Tennessee 73-68 on Wednesday night in the SEC opener for both teams.

Jaden Shackelford, Alabama’s leading scorer, struggled for most of the night before he made a 3-pointer and a layup in the final two minutes. The 3-pointer tied the game and the layup gave the Crimson Tide (10-3) the lead.

Oliver Nkamhoua then made a 3-pointer with 50 seconds left to give Tennessee a 68-67 advantage. Keon Ellis answered 10 seconds later with his own 3 and Alabama made three free throws in the final 25 seconds to seal the victory.

The Volunteers (9-3) were missing Kennedy Chandler and John Fulkerson, who tested positive for COVID-19. Chandler is Tennessee’s leading scorer. The freshman point guard is averaging 14 points and a team-leading 5.3 assists per game.

Even without their two stars, Tennessee held the advantage for most of the first half, briefly pushing the lead to 10 before Alabama’s 10-0 run to end the fhalf tied the game. It was highlighted by a 3-pointer from Shackelford.

The Volunteers also led for all but the first minute and final minute of the second half as they made 17 of 20 from the foul line.

Nkamhoua led Tennessee with 15 points and nine rebounds.


Tennessee produced three double-digit scorers (Nkamhoua, Santiago Vescovi and Zakai Zeigler) and two starters with nine rebounds (Nkamhoua and Uros Plavsic). If Tennessee has to live without Chandler and Fulkerson beyond Wednesday’s game, it will have more tests like this one — it has games against No. 16 LSU and No. 18 Kentucky, both on the road, on Jan. 8 and Jan. 15.

Alabama’s next real test could come against No. 11 Auburn on Jan. 11.


Tennessee: Hosts Ole Miss on Wednesday, which will be the Rebels’ first SEC game after Florida was unable to play due to the coronavirus.

Alabama: Currently scheduled for a game at Florida on Wednesday, but the Gators’ game against Ole Miss was postponed due to the Gators’ COVID-19 issues.


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