By JOHN ZENOR
AP Sports Writer
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Luka Brajkovic scored 22 points and made a late 3-pointer and Michael Jones scored 21 points to help lift Davidson to a 79-78 victory over No. 10 Alabama on Tuesday night.
The Wildcats (9-2) rolled to a 13-point lead in the second half and held on for their eighth straight win in a game scheduled to fill sudden voids in their respective schedules because of COVID-19. The Crimson Tide (9-3) have dropped two of three games but stayed in this one until Jahvon Quinerly missed a potential tying free throw with four seconds left.
Alabama scored the final nine points after Brajkovic’s 3-pointer with 2:01 left pushed it back to 79-69. But Davidson was able to run out the final seconds and ended up getting a huge win in the unexpected matchup.
Jones made 8 of 11 shots, including all three 3-point attempts, for the Wildcats. Hyunjung Lee scored 17 points and made four 3s. Foster Loyer scored 11 points after totaling 59 the previous two games.
Jaden Shackelford led Alabama with 20 points. Juwan Gary had 15 points and eight rebounds, while making 3 of 4 3-pointers. Quinerly scored 13.
The Tide answered Brajkovic’s ultimately decisive shot with eight points in 80 seconds. Shackelford hit a 3-pointer and Keon Ellis rebounded a missed shot, put it back, was fouled and made the subsequent free throw.
Ellis then stole the ball and fired it to Darius Miles for a dunk to make it 79-77 with 34 seconds left. Brajkovic stepped on the line after receiving the inbounds pass.
Quinerly made the first of two free throws with 4.4 seconds left, then Sam Mennenga rebounded the miss and the Wildcats called time out, forcing Alabama to foul twice.
The matchup was set after both teams had other games canceled because of COVID issues within other programs. Alabama had been set to face No. 21 Colorado State, and Davidson’s game with Loyola-Chicago was also called off.
The Wildcats had scored nine straight points, including back-to-back dunks, to build a 52-39 lead with 16:37 left.
Davidson is riding its longest win streak since winning 10 straight in the 2014-15 season. The nation’s No. 4 3-point shooting team made 12 of 24 and sank 31 of 58 from the field (53.4%).
Alabama has hit a rough spot the past few games, losing 92-78 at Memphis and squeaking past Jacksonville State, 65-59. Also made 12 3s, but needed a dozen more attempts.
Davidson hosts Johnson & Wales Wednesday afternoon, 18 hours after this one started.
Alabama opens Southeastern Conference play against No. 19 Tennessee on Dec. 29.
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