VANDY
BAMA

No Text

Lewis, Alabama hand Vanderbilt 15th straight loss, 68-61

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) Alabama survived in a game it couldn't really afford to lose.

Kira Lewis Jr. scored 19 points and the Crimson Tide turned back a big comeback attempt in a 68-61 victory Saturday over Vanderbilt, the Commodores' program-worst 15th consecutive loss.

The Tide (16-11, 7-7 Southeastern Conference) snapped a comparatively brief three-game skid despite losing most of a 23-point lead over the final 11 minutes.

A loss would have been a big blow to Alabama's already shaky NCAA Tournament hopes.

''This was a tough spot to be in,'' Alabama coach Avery Johnson said. ''We dropped a couple of games and everybody knew what the deal was in terms of Vanderbilt's record.

''I don't know if any team had as much pressure on them to win today as the Alabama Crimson Tide in the conference.''

The Commodores (9-18, 0-14) are now enduring the program's longest losing streak, topping a previous 14-game stretch of futility that ended in the 1935-36 season.

Vandy didn't break the dubious record quietly. The Commodores scored 15 straight points and cut it to 57-49 on Wetzell's second straight layup with 5:44 left.

''We easily could have folded,'' Commodores coach Bryce Drew said. ''When Bama came out and made shots and played with a lot of energy, our guys could have folded but they kept searching, searching, searching and it was nice to see them get that run.''

Lewis made 4 of 8 3-pointers for the Tide. Dazon Ingram had 13 points, 10 rebounds and six assists, while Donta Hall also had a double-double with 14 points and 11 boards.

Alabama had blown a 12-point lead over the final 12 minutes in a loss to Texas A&M earlier this week.

''I just feel like we lost focus,'' Ingram said. ''We've been giving up leads like that the past few games and we just wanted to make sure we could finish this one off and push through adversity.''

Simisola Shittu led Vandy with 16 points and 11 rebounds. Aaron Nesmith scored 14 and Yanni Wetzell had 10.

Herbert Jones finally halted the run with a dunk then made one of two free throws and had a steal to set up another basket. The seven-point final margin was as close as Vandy came in the second half.

Alabama surged to a 22-point lead in the first half but then didn't score over the final 3:30. Vandy managed to make it 35-20 by halftime.

''I think a big difference of the game was shooting,'' Drew said. ''I've watched the film from Alabama the last few games and the same shots that they made tonight are the same shots that they missed the other nights.''

Saben Lee, who had 24 points in the first meeting, finished with six points, six assists and four turnovers for Vanderbilt. Alabama's John Petty, who averages 11 points a game, didn't score but had six rebounds.

BIG PICTURE

Vanderbilt: Heated up and showed resilience even if the comeback fell well short. Shot 55.6 percent (15 of 27) in the second half.

Alabama: Came out with more energy early than in recent games, mounting an 18-2 run after spotting Vandy the first basket. Produced more offense after averaging 57 points in the three losses.

BACK-TO-BACK 3S

Mack made 3-pointers on the Tide's first two shots. Lewis and Norris both also hit back-to-back 3s, those mini-flurries accounting for the Tide's first six made long-range shots in the first half.

''That was great for us to get in that rhythm and make those 3s,'' Johnson said.

UP NEXT

Vanderbilt hosts Florida Wednesday night in a rematch of a 66-57 loss on Feb. 13.

Alabama visits South Carolina Tuesday night before two straight home games.

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Key Players
S. Lee
K. Lewis Jr.
31.1 Min. Per Game 31.1
14.0 Pts. Per Game 14.0
3.0 Ast. Per Game 3.0
2.4 Reb. Per Game 2.4
45.7 Field Goal % 45.1
33.3 Three Point % 37.3
70.7 Free Throw % 79.4
+ 2 Saben Lee made dunk 6.0
+ 1 Kira Lewis Jr. made 2nd of 2 free throws 11.0
+ 2 Saben Lee made dunk 6.0
  Kira Lewis Jr. missed 1st of 2 free throws 11.0
  Personal foul on Saben Lee 11.0
+ 3 Aaron Nesmith made 3-pt. jump shot, assist by Saben Lee 13.0
+ 1 Donta Hall made 2nd of 2 free throws 21.0
+ 1 Donta Hall made 1st of 2 free throws 21.0
  Personal foul on Aaron Nesmith 21.0
  Defensive rebound by Donta Hall 21.0
  Simi Shittu missed layup 23.0
Team Stats
Points 61 68
Field Goals 23-53 (43.4%) 24-57 (42.1%)
3-Pointers 4-17 (23.5%) 9-24 (37.5%)
Free Throws 11-16 (68.8%) 11-19 (57.9%)
Total Rebounds 36 36
Offensive 6 9
Defensive 28 27
Team 2 0
Assists 13 14
Steals 3 10
Blocks 2 4
Turnovers 17 9
Fouls 16 15
Technicals 0 0
16 PTS, 11 REB, 4 AST
19 PTS, 1 REB, 2 AST
12T
away team logo Vanderbilt 9-18 204161
home team logo Alabama 16-11 353368
Team Stats
away team logo Vanderbilt 9-18 68.1 PPG 38.8 RPG 11.6 APG
home team logo Alabama 16-11 72.0 PPG 41.2 RPG 12.3 APG
Key Players
11
S. Shittu F 10.9 PPG 6.7 RPG 1.8 APG 46.8 FG%
2
K. Lewis Jr. G 13.5 PPG 2.6 RPG 2.9 APG 43.3 FG%
Top Scorers
S. Shittu F 16 PTS 11 REB 4 AST
K. Lewis Jr. G 19 PTS 1 REB 2 AST
43.4 FG% 42.1
23.5 3PT FG% 37.5
68.8 FT% 57.9
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
S. Shittu 16 11 4 7/13 0/0 2/6 3 29 0 0 2 3 8
A. Nesmith 14 4 1 5/13 2/7 2/2 4 31 1 1 2 0 4
S. Lee 6 1 6 2/8 0/0 2/2 3 29 0 0 4 1 0
M. Ryan 3 2 1 1/5 1/5 0/0 2 30 0 0 1 0 2
C. Brown 0 2 0 0/1 0/0 0/0 0 5 0 0 2 1 1
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
S. Shittu 16 11 4 7/13 0/0 2/6 3 29 0 0 2 3 8
A. Nesmith 14 4 1 5/13 2/7 2/2 4 31 1 1 2 0 4
S. Lee 6 1 6 2/8 0/0 2/2 3 29 0 0 4 1 0
M. Ryan 3 2 1 1/5 1/5 0/0 2 30 0 0 1 0 2
C. Brown 0 2 0 0/1 0/0 0/0 0 5 0 0 2 1 1
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
Y. Wetzell 10 8 0 4/4 0/0 2/2 3 24 0 1 2 1 7
J. Toye 5 5 1 2/6 0/3 1/2 0 30 2 0 1 0 5
M. Evans 5 0 0 1/2 1/2 2/2 0 13 0 0 1 0 0
M. Moyer 2 1 0 1/1 0/0 0/0 1 9 0 0 2 0 1
E. Obinna - - - - - - - - - - - - -
I. Rice - - - - - - - - - - - - -
M. Hunt - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 61 34 13 23/53 4/17 11/16 16 200 3 2 17 6 28
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
K. Lewis Jr. 19 1 2 7/13 4/8 1/2 0 37 1 1 1 0 1
D. Hall 14 11 1 5/7 0/0 4/6 2 35 1 3 0 4 7
D. Ingram 13 10 6 5/8 0/1 3/6 2 35 1 0 1 1 9
T. Mack 8 1 2 2/5 2/5 2/2 3 18 2 0 1 0 1
J. Petty 0 6 3 0/7 0/5 0/0 2 33 1 0 2 1 5
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
K. Lewis Jr. 19 1 2 7/13 4/8 1/2 0 37 1 1 1 0 1
D. Hall 14 11 1 5/7 0/0 4/6 2 35 1 3 0 4 7
D. Ingram 13 10 6 5/8 0/1 3/6 2 35 1 0 1 1 9
T. Mack 8 1 2 2/5 2/5 2/2 3 18 2 0 1 0 1
J. Petty 0 6 3 0/7 0/5 0/0 2 33 1 0 2 1 5
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
R. Norris 9 3 0 3/8 3/5 0/0 3 23 2 0 1 2 1
H. Jones 5 3 0 2/8 0/0 1/3 1 13 2 0 1 1 2
D. Giddens 0 1 0 0/1 0/0 0/0 2 6 0 0 2 0 1
A. Johnson Jr. - - - - - - - - - - - - -
L. Schaffer - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A. Reese - - - - - - - - - - - - -
G. Smith - - - - - - - - - - - - -
T. Barnes - - - - - - - - - - - - -
D. Wood - - - - - - - - - - - - -
J. Davis-Fleming - - - - - - - - - - - - -
B. Johnson - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 68 36 14 24/57 9/24 11/19 15 200 10 4 9 9 27