Posted December 01, 2012 on AP on Fox
Big-east-basketball
Alabama saw it coming and came within a fingertip's reach of stopping it. Point guard Cashmere Wright hit a fadeaway jumper at the buzzer on Saturday, giving No. 17 Cincinnati a 58-56 victory over the Crimson Tide in a matchup of unbeaten teams that play shutdown defense. It came down to two plays on defense. Cincinnati (7-0) took advantage of its chance, swatting away the Crimson Tide's shot to try to take the lead in the closing seconds. Alabama (6-1) then failed to stop Cincinnati's final try. ''For the game to come down to that last shot, I'm proud of the effort our guys gave tonight,'' coach Anthony Grant said. Trevor Releford had a chance to give Alabama (6-1) the lead, but Justin Jackson swatted away his driving jump shot. Cincinnati got the loose ball and called timeout with 6 seconds left. ''Releford felt he could turn corner and get at the rim,'' Grant said. ''Jackson is a great defender. He made a heck of a play and kept the ball inbounds.'' Then, Wright barely got off a shot for the first game-winner of his career. Wright took the inbound pass at midcourt, drove to the left side of the basket and hit his fadeaway 12-footer over the outstretched arm of 7-foot center Moussa Gueye. Wright fell on his back after releasing the ball and didn't see it go through the hoop. He knew he'd won the game when teammates rushed at him. ''It was the least I could do,'' Wright said. ''I basically was throwing away the whole game at the end. I felt if they could take me that far, I could make the shot.'' Wright was only 3 of 8 from the field with four turnovers when coach Mick Cronin drew up the final play, putting the game in his hands. If Wright saw leading scorer Sean Kilpatrick open, he was supposed to pass to him. If not, take the shot. Alabama anticipated it but couldn't block it - the shot barely cleared Gueye's fingertips. ''I thought we contested the shot, but he's a hell of a player,'' Grant said. ''He made a big-time shot.'' JaQuon Parker and Kilpatrick had 13 apiece for Cincinnati. Trevor Lacey led Alabama with 16. Cincinnati opened the game with a 17-4 run, but the Crimson Tide regrouped and kept it tight throughout the second half, which featured five ties and eight lead changes. The Bearcats went more than 6 minutes without a field goal. After the opening minutes, the game was even. ''We knew coming in that their defense was outstanding and they were going to apply pressure,'' Grant said. ''We didn't do a very good job of handling it early. I told our guys what we needed to do was just settle down, it's going to be a 40-minute game, we're going to have an opportunity if we took care of the basketball.'' Alabama was the next team into the Top 25 this week, getting the 26th-most points while going 6-0 for the second season in a row. The Crimson Tide spent the first half overcoming a bad start, then had it come down to Wright's shot. The Crimson Tide had eight turnovers during Cincinnati's opening 17-4 run. The Crimson Tide got back into the game by dominating the boards and taking care of the ball - only eight turnovers the rest of the way. Alabama's 7-foot-1 center Carl Engstrom fell on the court and hurt his left knee less than 4 minutes into the game. He limped off and didn't return. Grant said Engstrom would have tests on the knee to determine the severity of the injury. Cincinnati's defensive pressure quickly had an effect, setting up that early run. The Crimson Tide settled down and started playing a little pressure defense of their own during an 11-2 spurt that cut it to 21-18. Lacey's back-to-back baskets completed the run. Alabama kept it close in the first half by dominating the boards 20-11 against Cincinnati's three-guard lineup. Releford's 3-pointer at the buzzer cut the Bearcats' lead to 33-27 at halftime. Releford missed the last game with a stomach virus, but was back in form on Saturday, playing 37 minutes and scoring 12 points. The Crimson Tide didn't shoot a free throw in the first half, while Cincinnati went 8 of 11 from the line. Gueye had a three-point play - including Alabama's first point from the line - during an 11-4 run that opened the second half. Lacey's pull-up jumper from the baseline gave Alabama its first lead, 38-37, with 14:16 to go. Neither team led by more than three points the rest of the way.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Cashmere Wright buzzer beater over Alabama

First, there's 6-0 tall Cashmere Wright's fadeaway over 7-0 Moussa Gueye. Then there's the Cincinnati bench coaches trying to restrain players. And finally, an epic Mick Cronin eye roll when the refs tell him they're reviewing the shot. So much goodness in this video.

Wright, No. 17 Cincinnati beat Alabama 58-56

Cashmere Wright's fadeaway jumper from the baseline at the buzzer gave No. 17 Cincinnati a 58-56 victory over Alabama on Saturday in a matchup of unbeaten teams that play shutdown defense. In the final seconds, Cincinnati (7-0) was a bit better. Trevor Releford had a chance to give Alabama (6-1) the lead, but Justin Jackson swatted away his driving jump shot. Cincinnati got...

Wright, No. 17 Cincinnati beat Alabama

CINCINNATI (AP) -- Cashmere Wright's fadeaway jumper from the baseline at the buzzer gave No. 17 Cincinnati a 58-56 victory over Alabama on Saturday in a matchup of unbeaten teams that play shutdown defense. In the final seconds, Cincinnati (7-0) was a bit better. Trevor Releford had a chance to give Alabama (6-1) the lead, but Justin Jackson swatted away his driving jump shot...

Cincy tops 'Bama on last-second shot

Point guard Cashmere Wright had never made a buzzer-beater to win a game. Coach Mick Cronin had never seen one of his teams pull one off at the end. No surprise, then, that both were a little stunned when the ball went in. Wright's fadeaway jumper at the buzzer gave No. 17 Cincinnati a 58-56 victory over Alabama on Saturday in a matchup of stingy unbeaten teams. In the final...

No. 17 Cincinnati 58, Alabama 56

Point guard Cashmere Wright had never made a buzzer-beater to win a game. Coach Mick Cronin had never seen one of his teams pull one off at the end. No surprise, then, that both were a little stunned when the ball went in. Wright's fadeaway jumper at the buzzer gave No. 17 Cincinnati a 58-56 victory over Alabama on Saturday in a matchup of stingy unbeaten teams. In the final...

Cashmere Wright Beats Bama at Buzzer

The Cincinnati Bearcats improved to 7-0 with a 58-56 win over the Alabama Crimson Tide this afternoon. UC was up 9 late in the first half before Trevor Lacey drilled a 3 to get the margin to 6. From there, it was nip and tuck the whole second half. The teams traded the lead numerous times. The Crimson Tide used their press to slow down the Cincinnati offense and put constant double...
College Basketball News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.