Alabama Basketball Upsets Notre Dame

ORLANDO, Fla. – Alabama senior guard Retin Obasohan threaded his way through the Notre Dame defense and slipped in an acrobatic layup with eight seconds remaining to give the Crimson Tide a 74-73 win over the 17th-ranked Fighting Irish Sunday.

It was Alabama’s second consecutive upset in the AdvoCare Invitational as Bama took the fifth place game. On Friday the Tide had defeated No. 20 Wichita State. Alabama (4-2) had not won consecutive games against ranked opponents since the Tide defeated then-No. 12 Florida on Feb. 26, 2006, after downing then-No. 8 Tennessee on Feb. 18.

Bama finished 2-1 in the tournament and is 4-2 on the season. Notre Dame fell to 4-2.

Next up, Alabama remains on the road, traveling to Hattiesburg, Miss., to take on the Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles on Friday, Dec. 4. The game will tip off at 7 p.m. CST. FoxSports1 will televise the game.

Alabama got off to a very hot start in the game on the three-point shooting of Arthur Edwards. After trailing 5-3, the Tide went on a 13-0 run. Bama hit its first four shots from behind the arc. The lead reached 13 points at 21-8, but Notre Dame came back to within one point at 29-28 before Alabama finished the first half with a 43-39 advantage.

The Irish tied Bama in the early moments of the second half and it became a back-and-forth game with neither team ahead by more than four points. The game was tied eight times and there were nine lead changes.

Alabama was forced to play the final minutes without starters Dazon Ingram and Jimmie Taylor, who fouled out, along with key reserve Riley Norris, who was injured in the first half and did not return.

Alabama trailed by three after the Irish’s Demetrius Jackson hit two free throws, but junior forward Michael Kessens evened the score at 66 with 5:24 remaining. The Tide would remain within one possession the rest of the way. Notre Dame held a one-point lead, up 73-72, with 28.6 seconds left in the game when forward Zach Auguste, who finished with 16 points, had a chance to pad the Irish’s lead at the free throw line. However, he missed both free throw attempts.

Alabama Coach Avery Johnson used back-to-back timeouts with 12.6 seconds to play to set up possible last-shot plays depending on the Notre Dame defense. Obasohan, who had keyed Alabama’s second half play, then made the winning shot.

Notre Dame’s Jackson drove the length of the floor and got off a shot in the final seconds, but it bounced off the rim and Alabama controlled the rebound as time expired.

Obasohan and Shannon Hale poured in 19 points each while Edwards – who was 6-6 with three three-pointers in the first half -- finished with 15. Kessens grabbed nine rebounds to go along with eight points. The Tide shot 54.4 per cent (31-57) and hauled in 34 rebounds while Notre Dame shot 44.6 per cent (25-56) and had 32 rebounds.

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