Alabama women's basketball survives a thriller vs. Tulane in WNIT

Maxwell Donaldson
The Tuscaloosa News

Alabama women’s basketball survived a thriller against Tulane, 81-77 in the second round of the WNIT in New Orleans on Monday.

Alabama missed a game-tying shot at the buzzer in a loss against Tulane in November.

Alabama will host Houston (18-15) in the third round on Thursday at 6 p.m. CT. 

After a first half that featured 14 lead changes, Alabama was leading by four at halftime. Neither team’s lead went into double-digits during the back and forth first half. Tulane took control in the third and fourth quarter but Alabama controlled the game late as Tulane finished 1-for-7 from the field. 

The Crimson Tide (19-13) was led by JaMya Mingo-Young with 21 points and Brittany Davis with 22 points and 10 rebounds. Megan Abrams added 19 points while Hannah Barber scored 12 points. 

Abrams scored her 1,000th career point with 5:09 left in the third quarter.

The Green Wave (21-10) was led by Moon Ursin with 15 points and six rebounds. 

Offensive up-and-downs in the first half

Alabama had two lengthy scoring droughts during the first half to go along with six turnovers.

Alabama survived the offensive struggles in part to multiple stretches where the Crimson Tide hit multiple field goals in a row including a stretch of seven straight.

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Balanced offense for Alabama

Alabama had six players score in the first half while shooting 55.6% from the field and 50% from 3-point range. Mingo-Young and Davis led the way but Alabama saw production from eight players.  

"I thought the balance in scoring was really special," Alabama coach Kristy Curry said. "It was a night where we had a couple of folks that struggled with it early and let the game come to them."

Alabama had nine players play against Tulane including the return of Khyla Wade-Warren after a five-game absence. Wade-Warren scored two points.

Free throws get it done

Alabama didn’t make a field goal for the last 4:33 of the third quarter but ended the quarter on an 8-0 run due to strong defense and stout free throw shooting. The run countered Tulane’s run that ended with a seven-point Green Wave lead.

Alabama shot 24-27 from the line, but as Alabama struggled from the field the free throws started to not be enough. It was fitting that Alabama closed the game out by Davis making two free throws with seven seconds left.