Donta Hall scored 17 points as host Alabama held off Penn State 73-64 on Friday night in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
John Petty added 13 points and Tevin Mack scored 11 for the Crimson Tide, who improved to 8-3 after winning for the sixth time in eight games.
Trent Buttrick came off the bench to score 13, Lamar Stevens added 12 and reserve Myreon Jones contributed 11 for the Nittany Lions (6-6). Penn State’s bench outscored its starters 34-30 as the team lost for the fourth time in six games.
The Tide led by six after a first half that featured significant runs by both teams, and the second half had similar surges.
Alabama increased its lead to 12 three times before the Nittany Lions made their second-half push.
Buttrick and Jones each had five points to lead a 14-2 run that pulled the Lions even at 49.
Riley Norris’ layup put the Tide back on top, but Buttrick answered with a 3-pointer that gave Penn State the lead.
The lead changed hands three more times, the final time when Hall’s two free throws nudged Alabama on top 55-54 with 7:46 to go.
Hall made three layups as the Tide pushed the lead to 63-58 with 5:04 remaining.
The lead alternated between three and five points until Kira Lewis Jr.’s layup gave Alabama a 69-62 edge with 2:16 left.
The Lions got within five before Lewis made a free throw, but Penn State missed four consecutive shots trying to get closer. The visitors made just one field goal in the final four minutes.
Lewis added two free throws with 29 seconds left and Herbert Jones made one with 16 seconds remaining to complete the scoring.
Myles Dread made a 3-pointer to start and another to end a 16-2 run that gave Penn State a 23-9 lead near the midpoint of the first half.
However, the Nittany Lions went the next 7:45 without scoring and the Tide took advantage.
Alabama got inside for seven easy baskets, two of which turned into three-point plays, and made two 3-pointers. Five players contributed points during the 24-0 run.
Mike Watkins ended the drought with a tip-in and Stevens added a jumper to complete the first-half scoring, leaving Alabama with a 33-27 halftime lead.
—Field Level Media