Alabama improved to 2-0 in conference play with a 74-47 win over South Carolina in their SEC home opener on Tuesday.
South Carolina was able to keep the game close in the first half due to a slow start by Alabama, but a dominant second half performance on the defensive end for the Crimson Tide led to a blowout victory.
Here are a few takeaways from the game.
Sears Shows Out
In the SEC opener, Alabama leaned on Mark Sears in the second half to carry them to victory. On Tuesday, Sears wasted no time providing the Crimson Tide with a spark on offense. He finished the game with a game-high 31 points, doing much of his damage from behind the arc. He ended the game hitting six of his eight three-point attempts, leading all shooters.
Estrada Provides Offensive Help
While Sears was busy hogging the spotlight, Aaron Estrada quietly had a nice game as well. Estrada helped complement the offensive explosion of Sears with 17 points of his own. Estrada shot 3-for-4 from behind the arc as well as pulling down a game-high seven rebounds.
Dominant Second Half
Alabama’s first half wasn’t bad but lacked intensity. The Crimson Tide held South Carolina to 29 points and scored 30 of their own to go into the half with a one-point lead. Alabama came out of the half with their best half of the season led by their defense. Alabama kept South Carolina scoreless for the first 6:30 minutes of the second half. The Crimson Tide held South Carolina to just 18 points in the second half while the offense tacked on 44 points for the 27-point victory.
Both Teams Struggle With Turnovers
Protecting the basketball was a big problem for both teams on Tuesday night. Alabama forced 17 turnovers while giving up 15 turnovers of their own. The 17 turnovers for South Carolina were the most they have had all season as well as the most turnovers the Crimson Tide has forced all season.
Next up for Alabama is a trip to Mississippi State on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. CT.
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