Women’s Basketball Opens In Coleman Today

Going to the Alabama men’s basketball opener against Towson tonight? Here’s a suggestion for free entertainment and getting a parking spot at Coleman Coliseum. The men play at 8 p.m., but before that the Crimson Tide women’s team opens its season at 5:30 CST.

Alabama doesn’t have many basketball doubleheaders because the women’s team of Coach Kristy Curry plays most of its games in Foster Auditorium, but the Bama women will open regular season play today (Friday, Nov. 14) against Florida A&M.

A ticket for the men’s game is good for admission to the women’s game. A ticket for the women’s game grants admission to the men’s game.

Alabama and Florida A&M are meeting for the fourth time in the series on Friday. The Crimson Tide leads 2-1, but the Lady Rattlers won the last contest, 61-52, in Tallahassee on Dec. 16, 2009.

The Tide returns three of its five starters from a season ago including sophomore Ashley Williams, who averaged 12.4 points per game in 2013-14. Williams is joined by fellow returning starters in junior Nikki Hegstetter and senior Sharin Rivers.

Karyla Middlebrook, who started seven of nine games before sitting out the remainder of the season with a hip injury, also returns, as well as senior Briana Hutchen, junior Khadijah Carter and sophomore Oceana Hamilton.

Alabama welcomes five newcomers including sophomore transfer Breanna Hayden, who will be eligible December 14, and true freshmen Quanetria Bolton, Hannah Cook, Meoshonti Knight and Diamante Martinez.

The Lady Rattlers will look to fill the shoes of the 2014 MEAC Player of the Year in Jasmine Grice, who averaged a league-best 25.7 points per game and a team-high 6.2 rebounds. Key returnees for Florida A&M include guard Taneka Rubin (12.2 ppg) and forward Jamie Foreman (4.9 rpg).

The Crimson Tide is 16-2 when opening the season at home. The last time it opened the season in Coleman Coliseum was during the 2010-11 season when it beat Tennessee State, 82-55.

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