TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) -- A virus couldn't stop Chuck Davis.
Neither could Arkansas.
An ailing Davis scored 16 of his 21 points in the second half,
leading Alabama (No. 17 ESPN/USA Today; No. 16 AP) to a 72-63 victory on Wednesday night and
prompting a plea from Razorbacks coach Stan Heath.
"Next time I hope you're healthy," he told Davis after the
The Crimson Tide (20-4, 9-2 Southeastern Conference), which
secured its second straight 20-win season, trailed by two points
early in the first half before Davis got hot.
He spent Monday in bed, practiced a little on Tuesday and his
game seemed a tad under the weather in the first half, when he
attempted only two shots. Davis blamed the defense for that, not
"They were playing a zone and doubling down so there weren't
opportunities for many shots," said Davis, who was 7-of-9 from the
field. "At halftime, Coach (Mark) Gottfried stressed getting the
ball inside. They went to man defense, and it was my opportunity to
He took advantage of it after Arkansas (17-8, 5-7) went up 39-37
early in the second half. Davis started Alabama's 16-5 rally with a
jump shot and capped it with a basket and free throw to give the
Tide a 53-44 lead with 11:01 left. The Razorbacks couldn't come
closer than seven points after that and had their three-game
winning streak snapped.
Davis also had four steals and two blocked shots in 37 minutes
but was only 7-of-13 from the free throw line.
"He's been weak and hasn't practiced," Gottfried said. "He
played a lot of minutes, more than I wanted him to. But in the
second half we just kept going to him down there and he had a lot
Earnest Shelton had 12 of his 19 points in the second half for Alabama.
"He played great tonight for not feeling well," Shelton said
Kennedy Winston added 18 points for the Tide.
Heath said the Razorbacks focused more on defending the Tide's
two outside threats than on Davis -- and paid for it.
"You have to make a decision on which one you want to hurt you
a little bit more," he said. "We made the decision for it to be
Davis and he did."
Jonathon Modica was 6-of-7 from the field and scored 16 points
for Arkansas but only attempted one shot in the second half.
Darian Townes had 14 points and 12 rebounds while leading scorer
Ronnie Brewer added 11 on 4-of-13 shooting.
Alabama, which has won nine of 10 games, shot 54 percent from
the field and made 24 of 36 free throws. Arkansas was whistled for
26 fouls to the Tide's nine.
Alabama pulled away once Davis started attacking the basket,
frequently drawing fouls against Razorbacks freshmen Townes and
Steven Hill, both of whom wound up in foul trouble.
Alabama's already thin bench was further depleted. Backup
forward Justin Jonus sat out the game with the flu while reserve
point guard Albert Weber missed his second straight game for
unspecified personal reasons.
Shelton, Winston and Davis had all but 14 of Alabama's points
and the bench produced only five.
The Razorbacks closed the first half on an 18-5 run, taking
their first lead at 34-33 on Ferguson's quick 3-pointer after a
turnover with 1:12 left. They were the final points of the half.
Modica scored the first eight points of the spurt, including two
3-pointers, and has 68 points in the past four games after breaking
out of a scoring drought. The Tide eased its way into control in
the second half.
"Their run was very subtle," Heath said. "It wasn't a major
run where they were just fast-breaking, getting dunks. I was more
concerned that we weren't executing as well as we needed to against