Late dunk lifts No. 9 Alabama over No. 14 Houston 83-82

Alabama guard JD Davison (3) reacts to a dunk that gave Alabama the lead in the closing seconds against Houston in an NCAA college basketball game Saturday, Dec. 11, 2021, in Tuscaloosa, Ala. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt) (Vasha Hunt, Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – JD Davison’s putback dunk with 33 seconds left and a final defensive stop gave No. 9 Alabama a 83-82 victory over 14th-ranked Houston on Saturday night for the Crimson Tide’s second straight win over a recent Final Four team.

The Tide (8-1), which defeated No. 5 Gonzaga last weekend in Seattle, also survived two late attempts by Houston when Kyler Edwards missed a 3-point attempt and Fabian White Jr.'s desperate heave bounced off the rim and was swatted out of bounds by Davison as the clock ran out.

Houston coach Kelvin Sampson and several players followed the officials off the court, arguing Davison's swat was goaltending. Houston's leading scorer, Marcus Sasser, had to be held back by teammates.

Juwan Gary topped his career-high by halftime and finished with 19 for the Tide. Jaden Shackelford scored 18 and made 5 of 7 3-pointers, including two big ones late. Jahvon Quinerly had 17 points and eight assists, and Davison finished with 10 points and nine rebounds.

Sasser led the way for Houston (8-2) with 23 points, despite making just 8 of 25 shots. Jamal Shead and Josh Carlton both scored 14 points and White had 11.

Shackelford hit back-to-back 3-pointers, making a foul shot after the first, for an 81-79 lead in the final three minutes. The score stayed that way after a Tide layup was waved off because of basket interference against Keon Ellis with 1:18 to play.

Then Sasser buried a 3-pointer to give Houston the lead before Davison slammed it home.

Houston called a timeout with 25 seconds left to set up the final play.


Houston: The Cougars had serious foul trouble, with six players picking up multiple fouls in the first half, and Edwards and Reggie Chaney drawing their fourth in the opening minutes of the second.

Alabama: Bama played back to back nonconference games against top 15 teams for the first time in 20 years, and delivered big wins in both.


Houston: Hosts Louisiana-Lafayette on Tuesday night.

Alabama: Visits Memphis on Tuesday night.


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