TUSCALOOSA — After trailing for most of the game, Texas A&M had a chance to defeat Alabama on the road.

With 3.4 seconds left, TJ Starks caught the inbound pass, which was lobbed over his head because Alabama was pressing, sprinted right outside the 3-point arc, and with his momentum still going toward the baseline, he floated a shot that banked in for an 81-80 victory Saturday.

It was the Aggies’ first SEC and road win of the season.

The winning possession was set up by Alabama’s struggles from the free-throw line. With the Crimson Tide leading by a point, Kira Lewis Jr. went to the line and only made one of two.

“Even if he would have made it, we would have tried to tie the game up with a three,” Starks said. “It did give us a little bit of life once he missed the free throw.”

Up to the final possession, Starks had struggled. The Aggies turned to the combination of Savion Flagg and Josh Nebo to score on the inside with a combined 37 points.

Each finished with seven rebounds, which led the team.

“They had a stretch there, where for whatever reason, we were just out of position on post defense, especially on Nebo,” Alabama coach Avery Johnson said. “He got the ball where he wanted to.”

The Aggies outscored the Crimson Tide by 48-30 inside the 3-point line. Of the 40 minutes of the game, Alabama led for 36 minutes.

John Petty had his best game of the season for the Crimson Tide, scoring 22 points. Donta Hall recorded his seventh double-double of the season, finishing with 14 points and a season-high 16 rebounds.

Alabama has struggled to hold leads, and Saturday wasn’t any different. It built an 11-point lead by the end of the first half, and early in the second half, led by 12. Halfway through the second half, its lead was down to three, and it gave up its first lead of the game at the 7:34 mark.

 

UP NEXT

Texas A&M: Returns home on Wednesday to face No. 11 Auburn.

Alabama: Plays at Missouri on Wednesday.