The No. 25 Alabama men’s basketball team defeated BYU, 71-59, Friday afternoon in its first game of the Barclays Classic, which was played on the campus of LIU Brooklyn in Brooklyn, N.Y. With the win, the Crimson Tide improves to 5-0, which is the best start to a season since the 2012-13 campaign when UA began 6-0.

The Tide will play for the event’s championship in the Barclays Center against No. 14 Minnesota on Saturday night.

The Tide used a balance scoring attack as four players reached double figures to top the Cougars. Freshman John Petty led the charge, tallying a team-high of 16 points while converting 4-of-7 from three-point range. Junior Donta Hall collected 14 points while leading the team with nine rebounds.

Sophomore Dazon Ingram contributed 13 points, three rebounds and three assists while freshman Collin Sexton added 10 points, seven rebounds and three assists.

The Crimson Tide shot a solid 49.1 percent from the field (27-of-55) in Brooklyn, including 60.0 percent in the first half alone. On the defensive end, Alabama swatted six shots and snagged six steals, while forcing 11 turnovers.

“We’re a team that’s capable of having four, five, six guys in double figures,” Alabama head coach Avery Johnson said. Our teams has balance and quality depth. There may be some nights a guy may have to carry us the same way [Yoeli] Childs tried to carry [BYU] today, but we take pride in having guys who can pass, dribble and shoot; multiple guys who can play good defense, and we don’t really have a lot of weak links in the chain on either end of the floor. So we’re hoping to get more balance offensively. We needed it today.”

The Crimson Tide stormed out of the gates on a roll, shooting 60% from the floor (18-of-30) and 80% from beyond the arc (4-of-5) to take the 11-point lead at the end of the first half. After the Cougars opened the game with a three-pointer, the Crimson Tide answered with seven straight points and never looked back. Alabama continued its offensive rampage, going on an 8-0 run to take a double-digit lead, 20-8, at the 14:01 minute mark. The Tide would go on and lead by double digits, 42-31, at the break.

BYU turned up the intensity to start the second half, cutting the lead to seven just over four minutes into the stanza. However, Alabama responded with a 9-3 run over the next 4:19 to take the 55-42 lead at the 11:18 minute mark. Both team traded baskets down the stretch, but the Tide was able to secure the 12-point win by knocking down free throws in the final minutes.

The Crimson Tide and the Golden Gophers will play for the Barclays Classic Championship on Saturday afternoon in a top-25 matchup. Tipoff is slated for 4 p.m. CT (5 p.m. ET) at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y.  The game can be viewed on Stadium TV. The radio broadcast will be heard on WBEI 101.7 FM in Tuscaloosa or on the Tune In Radio app.


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