No. 7 Alabama defeats Ole Miss 84-62

Mathey Gibson, Staff Reporter

On a stormy night in Tuscaloosa, Alabama basketball brought the thunder. 

On Tuesday, No. 7 Alabama defeated Ole Miss 84-62 behind an electric offensive performance, shooting 46%from the field and 45% from three. 

Once again, leading the charge for the Crimson Tide (12-2, 2-0 SEC) was projected lottery pick Brandon Miller, who scored eight first-half points en route to a 17-point, 5-rebound and 2-assist performance.  

Joining Miller was senior forward Noah Gurley, who tallied seven points on 3-for-5 shooting. 

The Rebels (8-6, 0-2 SEC) were stifled in the first half, trailing 44-23 at the break and shooting 29% from the field.  

It was a rough night for Ole Miss star Matthew Murrell, who finished with nine points on 4-for-13 shooting. 

There was perhaps no greater performance than that of Alabama’s Jahvon Quinerly, who finished with 11 points on 4-for-7 shooting without turning the ball over.  

“We need him to take care of the ball,” Crimson Tide head coach Nate Oats said. “Obviously that was big for him tonight … Shooting wise, he’s been in the gym working on his shot. I think he’s gotten comfortable — you know he struggled shooting the ball last year, I think he felt a lot more pressure, I think having Brandon [Miller], shooters, different guys out there that can help — there’s not as much pressure on him.” 

Joining Quinerly in the backcourt with solid performances were Jaden Bradley and Mark Sears, who combined for 30 points.  

Manning the paint for Alabama were Noah Clowney and Charles Bediako, blocking four shots and combining for 14 rebounds. While they didn’t put up gaudy numbers offensively, the frontcourt duo thwarted the Rebels on the interior throughout the night, forcing Kermit Davis’ squad to attack from beyond the arc, where they struggled for much of the night, shooting 11% from downtown. 

Capping of the night for Alabama was Miller, who hit a last-second 3-pointer from halfcourt that sent the crowd into a frenzy at the 3:54 mark — giving Alabama a 76-58 advantage, and all but sealing the deal for Oats’ fourth-year squad.  

“I warm up shooting deep shots, but I don’t think I practice those,” Miller said. “I think they just fall in sometimes.” 

After avoiding a letdown versus a tough Ole Miss team, the red-hot Crimson Tide will now set their sights on a dangerous Kentucky team coming off a victory over the LSU Tigers.  

Tipoff for No. 7 Alabama and Kentucky is set for Saturday, Jan. 7 at 12 p.m. CT on ESPN.  

Questions or comments? Email Blake Byler (Sports Editor) at [email protected]