Game Two Preview: Alabama Versus Liberty
The Alabama Crimson Tide (1-0) will welcome the Liberty Flames (1-0) for Alabama's 2nd home matchup of the season.
The Tide are coming off of an impressive 54-75 win over the Longwood Lancers, the reigning Big South champions. On the other side of the court, the Flames will be coming off of a dominating win, destroying the Regent University Royals 104-38.
In Liberty's season opener, everyone got involved in the action. The Flames had 5 double-digit scorers on the night, led by 5th year senior Darius McGhee and sophomore Brody Peebles. The Flames will look to add a great win to their resumé Friday, as they hope to make the national tournament for the 7th time in program history.
For Alabama, they will look to continue to add on momentum after their win 21-point win Monday night. The Tide dominated the Lancers in the paint and looked much improved defensively from last season, out-rebounding the Lancers 67-38, crushing their season high from last year by 15. Alabama continued to dominate in the paint all night, beating out the Lancers in blocks (9-3), points in the paint (48-24), and offensive rebounds (22-12).
On the other hand, it wasn't all pretty and perfect for the Tide. They continued their struggles offensively from the pre-season and last year, shooting a poor 39% from the field and an awful 10% from deep. Hopefully, this can be attributed to off-season rust and the Tide will heat up before they enter SEC play.
Nate Oats on his teams offensive and defensive performance against Longwood:
I told you we're going to be better on defense, but I also told you we were going to be a better shooting team. We weren’t tonight, but I think the shooting numbers will take care of itself.
The young Tide squad also had struggles with handling the ball, turning the ball over to the Lancers 19 times. On multiple occasions, Alabama also missed many passes in transition.
Nate Oats on the Tide's turnovers:
“We want to play fast, but we don’t want to rush. We were way too careless.”
On Friday night, the Flames will hope to pull of an upset on the road against a ranked Bama team with a goal of adding an excellent win to their March resume. For the Tide, they will look to continue to grow and develop their young squad before heading into the tough part of their non-conference schedule.