ALABAMA WOMEN’S BASKETBALL HOLDS FIRST PRACTICE OF SEASON

Ua Womens Basketball

Alabama women’s basketball held its first practice of the 2019-20 season Wednesday afternoon inside Foster Auditorium.

Practice will continue in preparation for its season opener against Hampton on Wednesday, Nov. 6 inside Coleman Coliseum.

“Today was the first day of practice, but it’s a different pace for us because we’ve had such a great start with our summer experiences,” head coach Kristy Curry said in a press release. “We return a lot of experience and we are a hard-working team. We talk a lot about grit and gratitude and this team is one of the grittiest bunches I’ve been around in a long time.”

Last season Alabama was the 11th-youngest team in the country. Entering this season, 11 players return from last year’s roster which is tied for first among Southeastern Conference teams. Alabama returns 84.4 percent of its scoring, four out of five starters, its top three scorers and nine of 10 top scorers from last year.

Three players return after redshirting last season including Jordan Lewis, Amber Richardson and Shelby Gibson. Lewis averaged 13.5 points per game, which was second on the team until suffering a season-ending wrist injury.

After scoring 457 points last season, senior Cierra Johnson looks to make another statement. She is one of two players to score 450-plus points in a season since 1999-00 and it’s the highest amount of points scored since 2010. Johnson led the team with 14.7 points, 3.1 assists and 1.3 steals per game last season. Junior Jasmine Walker looks to do the same after averaging 12.4 points and a team-high 7.5 rebounds per game. She also had a team leading six double-doubles.

Alabama will face 16 of 29 opponents who were 2019 NCAA Tournament teams. The Crimson Tide will play Texas A&M, Kentucky and Auburn twice, all of which made the NCAA Tournament. South Carolina, Tennessee, Mississippi State and Missouri are also on its schedule.

The Crimson Tide will begin its season with an exhibition game against Auburn-Montgomery on Sunday, Oct. 27 at 2:30 p.m. CT.

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