Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Women’s basketball drops second game of season versus Syracuse

Courtesy of UA Athletics

Alabama women’s basketball marched into the iconic JMA Wireless Dome in Syracuse, New York, determined to pick up another marquee nonconference victory while representing its conference in the first-ever ACC/SEC Challenge. 

Unfortunately, things did not go according to plan. The Orange dominated on the boards and stopped a last-minute comeback attempt while handing the Crimson Tide a 79-73 loss in Alabama’s final nonconference Power Five game of the season. 

“Credit to Syracuse, they were able to make some plays down the stretch,” head coach Kristy Curry said. “I thought our bench play was poor, but overall thought we played poorly as far as rebounding the basketball. It was atrocious and something we continue to talk about, work on and continue to coach, but you can’t get outrebounded by 22 on the road and expect to win basketball games.” 

The Crimson Tide grabbed just 25 rebounds to the Orange’s 47. Syracuse forwards Kyra Wood and Alyssa Latham combined for 25 boards themselves while both setting new career highs with 13 and 12 rebounds respectively.  

The loss continues a troubling trend for Alabama. Through nine games, the Crimson Tide ranks No. 10 in the SEC in rebounds per game, and No. 12 in defensive rebounds per game. 

Despite the struggles, Alabama nearly mounted a comeback. 

Down 69-59 with three minutes to play, guard Aaliyah Nye hit a 3 to cut the deficit to 7.  

Then Wood was forced into making a bad pass, which was intercepted by guard Jessica Timmons, who fed Nye for a transition layup to cut the deficit to 5. 

Just a few seconds later, guard Loyal McQueen came up with a steal, and she found Nye, who made it a 2-point game with a 3, giving her 8 points in 33 seconds. 

Unfortunately, the streak ended there. Syracuse head coach Felisha Legette-Jack called timeout, and her team scored 5 straight points to put the game away. 

Alabama will play in many different arenas this season, from the beautiful yet hostile Bud Walton Arena in Fayetteville, Arkansas, to the theater-like Memorial Gym in Nashville, Tennessee. But there is no place like “The Dome.” 

“It’s definitely different,” Curry said of the venue. “The entire shootaround, there was a loud noise of someone drilling, so that was a struggle. It’s such a big area. It’s really big. I’m not sure if the backdrop had anything to do with finishes, but we just weren’t tough enough to come in here and play in this open environment. … It’s hard to simulate certainly. There’s no place in Tuscaloosa to simulate it.” 

The 50,000-seat stadium is a mecca of basketball, the place that former Syracuse men’s head coach Jim Boeheim called home for 43 seasons. This is something that was not lost on Curry. 

“It’s really cool when you think about growing up and watching Coach Boeheim’s teams, watching his zones, and studying a lot of the things that he did,” Curry said. “I had a chance to go to a lot of his clinics and hear him speak and study him a little bit, so it was cool from that standpoint. Basketball can take you to some amazing places.” 

The Crimson Tide now has the better part of a week to regroup before its next matchup, a home clash with Coastal Carolina. The Chanticleers are currently 4-3, and are led by senior guard Deaja Richardson, who is averaging almost 16 points per game to start the season. 

The game will be played Wednesday, Dec. 6, and will be broadcast on SEC Network+. Tipoff is at 11:30 a.m. CT. 

More to Discover