With a paid attendance of 9,056, Bama overcame a torrid shooting night from the field (24-71, 33.8%) and the charity stripe (7-18, 38.9%). The Tide actually shot better from the arc (8-20, 40%) with the last five field goals being from the three point line.
In the first half, neither team would develop a lead more than five when S.E. Louisiana led 23-18 with about 1:30 to go in the half. With a Justin Knox jumper and Riley making 3-4 from the foul line, the Tide would narrow the Lions’ lead to 25-23 at the half.
In the second half, S.E. Louisiana would build a lead to 32-26 at the 15:59 mark.
Bama would rally to take its only lead of the second half 37-36 with 10:14 left on a Hendrix put back.
That lead was short lived as the Lions would extend the lead back to 54-48 off a made free throw with only 28.2 seconds remaining.
The next series of events was hair-raising as a whistle blew while a Riley three ball rips the nets. The call was a foul on a Lions’ player who ran through a Hendrix’s pick knocking him to the floor with 18.5 seconds.
It was not a shooting foul as the Tide would in-bound the ball under their basket. Bama would find Justin Tubbs who nailed a second three pointer with 11 seconds to go tying the game at 54 all.
S.E. Louisiana would get a shot off just before the buzzer sounded that rimmed off.
In the over time period, the Lions would get the first basket with a jumper to take a 56-54 lead before Riley went berserk. He would make back-to-back three point bombs at the 2:00 and 1:05 mark to make it 60-56.
S.E. Louisiana would make a lay-up before Riley’s last three would make it 63-58. The Lions would make a three pointer just before time ran out to give the Tide a 63-61 lead.
After the game Coach Mark Gottfried stated, “We are very fortunate to win tonight. Not to take anything away from our opponent, but our team didn’t give up and overcame a poor shooting night.”
Gottfried also said, “If there is a silver lining tonight, maybe Riley got on track.”
The Tide was led by Riley’s 23 points while Hendrix’s double-double streak came to an end with 17 points and seven rebounds. The Lions were lead by Kevyn Green’s 22 points.
Starters for S.E. Louisiana: Warrell Span, Kevyn Green, Patrick Sullivan, Dekyron Nicks and Tavaris Nance.
Starters for Alabama: Richard Hendrix, Demetrius Jemison, Mykal Riley, Alonzo Gee and Brandon Hollinger.
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