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The Dagger: College Basketball Blog

Alabama’s Trevor Lacey delivers the new season’s first buzzer beater

Jeff Eisenberg
The Dagger

The first buzzer beater of the new college basketball season thwarted what would have been a noteworthy upset.

Desperate to avoid overtime against a dangerous South Dakota State team expected to make the NCAA tournament for a second straight year, Alabama put the ball in the hands of sophomore guard Trevor Lacey with the score tied and the clock ticking down. Lacey passed up a ball screen, shook South Dakota State's best defender Brayden Carlson and buried a contested 3-pointer from just to the right of the top of the key as time expired, giving the Crimson Tide a hard-earned 70-67 victory.

"Lacey's a good player," South Dakota State coach Scott Nagy told the Huntsville Times. "I would guess by the end of the season he'll be their leading scorer. I don't think there's anything we could have done more. It shouldn't have come down to that. We didn't deserve to win the game."

A top 50 recruit who chose Alabama over the likes of Kentucky and Kansas in May 2011, Lacey showed glimpses of promise as a freshman, starting 16 of the Crimson Tide's final 22 games. He started at his natural point guard position Friday because Alabama coach Anthony Grant opted to sit all-SEC guard Trevor Releford to begin the game, but Lacey will probably play mostly off ball again this year.

Lacey's 15 points helped Alabama overcome a 30-point outburst from South Dakota State star Nate Wolters, one of the nation's top small-conference players. The Jackrabbits upset Washington last season en route to their first-ever NCAA tournament appearance, but they'll have to wait until later for their first signature win of the new season.

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