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Miami Falls in NIT Quarterfinals at Alabama

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Box Score

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Freshman guard Trevor Releford scored 22 points to lead Alabama to a 79-64 victory over Miami in the quarterfinals of the NIT on Wednesday night.

Senior Senario Hillman, playing in his last game in Coleman Coliseum where Alabama went a school-record 19-0 this season, scored 17 points and set a school record with 175 career steals. Tony Mitchell had 16 points and JaMychal Green added 14 for Alabama (24-11).

The Crimson Tide will play Colorado in the semifinals in Madison Square Garden on March 29. Green and Mitchell both had nine rebounds for Alabama.

Durand Scott had 19 points, Reggie Johnson had 14 points and seven rebounds and DeQuan Jones added 12 points for Miami (21-15).

Alabama led by as many as 14 points in the first half, then withstood a Miami rally early in the second half before pulling away to the victory.

  1st 2nd F
#2 Miami 26 38 64
#1 Alabama 36 43 79
Team Stat Comparison
  UM UA
Points 64 79
FG Made-Attempted 23-57 30-55
FG Percentage 40.4 54.5
3P Made-Attempted 2-15 4-15
3P Percentage 13.3 26.7
FT Made-Attempted 16-23 15-24
FT Percentage 69.6 62.5
Rebounds 36 34
Assists 5 10
Turnovers 19 15
Miami Stat Leaders Alabama
D. Scott 19 Points 22 T. Releford
R. Johnson 7 Rebounds 9 Mitchell/Hines
D. Scott 2 Assists 3 C. Davis
D. Jones 3 Steals 4 J. Green
N/A 0 Blocks 3 C. Hines

The Crimson Tide took a 17-6 lead and extended it 24-10 on a layup by Hillman with 11:02 left in then first half. Miami went on a 12-6 run to make it 30-22 when Malcolm Grant made a 3-pointer with 4:23 left. The Crimson Tide responded by scoring six of the next 10 points to lead 36-26 at halftime.

“Our advantage was our speed and quickness and that turned out to be very effective,” said Alabama coach Anthony Grant. “I thought we had success attacking them in transition.”

The Hurricanes opened the second half with a 15-6 run to pull within 42-41 on a fastbreak layup by Jones with 14:15 to play. Alabama outscored Miami 33-16 to push the lead to 75-57, matching its largest of the game, when Releford made a free throw with 2:09 to go.

“Their athleticism took over in the second half,” Miami coach Frank Haith said.

Coming to a Close
The Hurricanes close the 2010-11 season with a 21-15 overall record, having won nine of their last 15 games, and advancing to the quarterfinals of the National Invitation Tournament for the second time in program history. Miami is now 6-10 in the NIT, including a 5-4 mark under head coach Frank Haith. Haith has more postseason wins than any other coach in program history at 6-5.

Tonight’s Starters
Starting for Miami tonight were Durand Scott, Malcolm Grant, Rion Brown, Adrian Thomas and Reggie Johnson. Brown started all five postseason games for Miami after not making a single start during the regular season.

Update the Record Books
The Hurricanes played in their program-high 36th game of the season, while Malcolm Grant made his Miami record 36th start of the season. In addition, sixth-year player Adrian Thomas closes his collegiate career with a school-record 132 appearances as a Hurricane.

Registering three fouls this evening, Reggie Johnson set a new school record in personal fouls in a season with 116, edging Hammie Ward’s previous record of 115 set in 1991-92.

Durand Scott‘s 1,182 minutes on the court this season is second behind Guillermo Diaz’ school-record 1,196 in 2005-06, while Reggie Johnson’s 59.1 percent shooting from the field in 2010-11 is third-best in a single-season at Miami.

From Downtown
Malcolm Granthit the only two three-pointers of the evening for the Hurricanes to extend his three-point streak to an ACC-long 23-straight games, for the fifth-longest streak in Miami history heading into next season. With 155 career threes in just two seasons as a Hurricane, Grant is in 10th place all-time in program history in triples made, while his 94 three-pointers this season ties Jack McClinton (2007-08) for the second-most in Miami single-season history. His 222 attempts are the third most tries from deep in a season for a Hurricane.

Grant — who leads the ACC in three-point field goal percentage, three-pointers per game and free throw percentage — has hit a three in 33-of-36 games this season.

Adrian Thomas snapped his 19-game three-point streak after finishing the evening scoreless. His 93 three-pointers this season are fourth most in a single season by a Hurricane, while his 204 career threes rank fifth. His 522 career long-range attempts rank fifth, while his 239 attempts this season are a new school record.

Great Scott
Over Miami’s three NIT games, Durand Scott averaged a team-high 19.3 points, 3.3 rebounds and 3.3. assists per game, shooting 50 percent from the field and 88.5 percent from the line (23-26) over the tournament. He scored 19 points versus Florida Atlantic, 20 points versus Missouri State and 19 points at Alabama.

Cleaning the Glass
Reggie Johnson, who is third in the ACC in rebounding, grabbed a team-high seven rebounds at Alabama, to close his sophomore season with 347 rebounds — the sixth-highest single-season total in UM and the most since Rick Barry pulled down a school-record 475 boards in 1964-65.

Johnson averaged 12.3 points — on 70.8 percent shooting (17-24) — and 12.0 rebounds an outing over the three NIT games.

Go DJ
DeQuan Jones registered a season-high 12 points, including a season-high four free throws made, and a career-high three steals versus the Crimson Tide.

Bench Support
Over the three NIT games, Julian Gamble shot 88.9 percent from the field (8-9), averaging 7.3 points and 5.7 rebounds per game.