LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP) — Keon Ellis had 22 points, Jaden Shackelford contributed 15 and No. 10 Alabama defeated Miami 96-64 in the fifth-place game at the ESPN Events Invitational on Sunday night.
Alabama (6-1), which also got 13 points each from JD Davison and Juwan Gary, found itself in the consolation bracket after losing its tournament opener to coach Rick Pitino’s Iona team. Davison added 10 assists.
“We took an ‘L’ the first game but it’s not the end of the world,” Ellis said. “You just got to learn from it and move on. I think tonight showed how we bounced back from that.”
Kameron McGusty had 21 points and 10 rebounds for Miami (4-3), and Isaiah Wong scored 10 of his 14 points in the second half.
The Crimson Tide trailed by as many as nine points but grabbed a 33-30 halftime lead thanks to Jahvon Quinerly’s 3 with 2 seconds left. Alabama then used a 15-6 stretch to open up a 48-36 advantage 4 minutes into the second half, and broke the game open with a 17-0 run over five minutes — including two 3s from Shackelford.
“I thought our second half was as good of basketball as we’ve played all year,” Alabama coach Nate Oats said. “I thought as the tournament went along the ball moved better, guys playing more unselfish.”
Alabama finished with 22 assists, compared to Miami’s six. The Crimson Tide also won the rebound battle 42-23.
BY THE NUMBERS
Davison had six rebounds, falling four short of a triple-double. … Ellis went 5 of 6 from 3-point range, and Alabama made 16 of 30 overall.
Alabama: Will likely stay in the Top 25, but will be passed by a number of teams in the next rankings.
Miami: Coach Jim Larrañaga remains one win away from tying Louisville’s Denny Crum (675) for 34th place on the career wins list.
LONG TIME COMING
This was the first time Miami played a regular-season nonconference game against a Top 10 team since beating No. 8 Florida on Nov. 17, 2014.
Alabama: At No. 1 Gonzaga on Saturday. Gonzaga will drop from from the top spot in the upcoming poll after losing to No. 5 Duke.
Miami: Plays at Penn State on Wednesday night in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge.
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