University of Alabama shooting guard John Petty will be “a game-time decision” for the Crimson Tide in its Wednesday night game against Louisiana Tech after results from an MRI, The News has learned.
Petty injured his right ankle in the latter stages of Alabama’s wild 89-84 loss to Minnesota at the Barclay’s Classic in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Saturday and was forced to leave the game. However, an MRI on Sunday indicated a sprain but no broken bones or ligament damage. It is not known if Petty will be available for practice on Monday.
The Crimson Tide were forced to finish with only three players on the court over the final 10-plus minutes of the Minnesota contest after Petty was injured with 10:41 to play. Seven Alabama players were ejected for leaving the bench during an altercation at the 13:43 mark of the second half, which left five UA players on the court. Two minutes later, sophomore Dazon Ingram fouled out with 11:37 remaining. Less than a minute later, Petty went down with an injury, leaving Alabama with three players over the final 10:41 and the Tide trailing 67-56.
Freshman Collin Sexton and his two remaining teammates, senior Riley Norris and freshman Galin Smith, persevered. Sexton ended the night with 40 points to become the first Alabama player to score 40 in a game since Reggie King had 43 points against Virginia on Dec. 29, 1978, as Alabama, despite being down to three players, eventually cut the Gophers’ lead to just three points.
Because the seven players were ejected for leaving the bench area but not for fighting, all are expected to be available to play on Wednesday.
Alabama coach Avery Johnson said on Sunday that he was proud of his team’s effort and referred to a comment from his Twitter account.
. @AlabamaMBB showed an amazing display of passion and grit today at @barclayscenter Love all my guys! #Good2Great #perseverance 🐘🐘🐘. 🏀🏀🏀
— Avery Johnson (@CoachAvery6) November 26, 2017
Johnson also noted the play of Smith, a freshman who played the final 10 minutes with Norris and Sexton.
“Here’s a guy in Galin who was the so-called ‘fifth man’ in our recruiting class,” Johnson said. “I can’t tell you how pleased I am with the way he has developed and the way he battled on Saturday. We have talked for years about what a competitor Riley Norris is, and Collin Sexton, we knew, was a fierce competitor. But Galin was tremendous with the way he battled on Saturday.”
Reach Cecil Hurt at firstname.lastname@example.org or 205-722-0225.