Road Redemption: Women’s basketball travels to take on Arkansas

Will Miller, Staff Reporter

The Alabama women’s basketball team faces a quick turnaround as it seeks to bounce back from a 38-point loss to the LSU Tigers on Monday night. The Crimson Tide is set to play against the Arkansas Razorbacks on Thursday night in Bud Walton Arena. 

Alabama (15-5, 4-3 SEC) won three consecutive matchups before facing LSU.  

“It’s not what’s behind us that we’re looking at. It’s what is in front of us,” Alabama head coach Kristy Curry said. “We’re not going to focus on the negative. … We’re just going to focus on [what’s in front of us.]” 

Arkansas (17-5, 4-3 SEC) is what’s in front of Alabama. The Razorbacks have lost two in a row but played LSU close enough to give the still-undefeated Tigers a real fight. Most recently, Arkansas faced No. 1 South Carolina and found itself doubled up in points and outrebounded by 57. The Razorbacks possess two ranked wins.  

In addition to the SEC foes, the two squads share two nonconference opponents, the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and the University of South Florida. Both teams went 1-1 against those schools, beating the Trojans and losing to the Bulls. 

To get back on track and take a win heading into the weekend, Alabama must shoot the basketball better. The Crimson Tide hit just five triples in 27 attempts in Monday night’s game. Despite picking things up and playing better in the second half, Alabama faced a deficit it could not overcome. The team shot under 30% from the field, another statistic that must improve on Thursday. 

“They shoot the ball really well, but they’re also really effective at getting to the rim and getting to the free throw line,” Alabama guard Hannah Barber said of Arkansas. “[We have to] focus on keeping the ball in front, containing penetration, and then getting out to shooters.” 

The Crimson Tide defense has played a big part in the team’s success this season. That defense is now facing some of the best offenses in the league in a relatively short period of time. In two of its last three games, Arkansas scored 84 and 76. Alabama’s defense needs to complement its offense in order to minimize scoring opportunities for the home team in enemy territory.  

Part of this  is rebounding. The Razorbacks are reeling in this category after being outclassed on the boards against the Gamecocks. Alabama has worked to improve its performance on the glass, and will hope that work translates into a road environment.  

The Crimson Tide will tip things off in Fayetteville at 6 p.m. CT on Thursday night. 

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