MONTREAL – The Alabama men’s basketball team cruised to a 96-57 victory Monday night against the McGill Redmen in the first game of the Crimson Tide’s Canadian Tour. Freshman John Petty led Alabama with a game high 22 points, including connecting on 6-of-8 shots from beyond the arc en route to the 39-point win.
Junior guard Ar’Mond Davis collected 14 points off the bench, while sophomore forward Daniel Giddens and freshman guard Collin Sexton both added 13. Including Giddens, the Tide’s six newcomers combined for 57 of the team’s 96 points on the night.
"Overall it was extremely positive," head coach Avery Johnson said of the result. "We had unbelievable energy throughout the game. Our guys moved the ball and we made some shots. I thought we played really good defense. We clamped down on them defensively, so I am pleased with the overall energy and passion that we played with.
"In the first half, I thought we did a great job with our pace. We set great screens and our guys had great spacing on offense, which allowed John to hit some shots. In the second half, we got really sloppy. That gives me something to talk to the team about and show them some video. We have really good kids on our team who want to play the right way. We had some correctable mistakes tonight and we can learn from those."
The Tide got off to a slow start as McGill opened the game on an 11-2 run. However, it was all Alabama from that point on. A three-pointer by Sexton jump-started a 36-2 run that saw the Tide score 18 straight points. In all, Alabama's run spanned two quarters and lasted a total of 11:57. UA would go on to lead 51-28 at the half.
The second half was more of the same, despite Sexton spending most of the stanza on the bench with foul trouble.
Leading 66-42 with 4:45 left in the third quarter, the Tide went on a 16-2 run over the next 7:10 to increase its lead to 82-44 with 6:35 left in the game.
Braxton Key added eight points and a team-high five boards, as every Alabama player who saw action scored at least two points.
"We wanted to give everybody a chance to play," Johnson said. "We had a chance to spread out the minutes because we are playing three games in four nights. We want to try and impose our will against teams. We were a little sloppy and need to take better care of the basketball, then we will have chances to score even more points."
The Tide finished the game shooting 60 percent (34-of-57) from the field and 56 percent (14-of-25) from the beyond the arc, while holding the Redmen to just 33 percent (19-of-58) shooting from the floor and 23 percent (7-of-30) from deep. Alabama owned a 34-25 advantage on the boards, while its reserves outscored McGill’s bench, 43-17.
Alabama will depart Montreal for Ottawa on Tuesday morning and will return to action when they play Carleton on Wednesday night. Tip time is set for 6 p.m. CT (7 p.m. ET).