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Top 25 men's basketball roundup

Alabama 70, No. 13 LSU 67

Keon Ellis made two free throws with 5 seconds left, and Alabama survived a late comeback bid by No. 13 LSU to win 70-67 on Wednesday night and snap a three-game skid.

LSU trailed by eight points with 1:08 remaining. Tari Eason, who finished with 26 points and 10 rebounds, dunked to draw the Tigers closer. Brandon Murray hit two free throws, and after four missed foul shots by Alabama, Murray made a 3-pointer with 8 seconds remaining to cut the Crimson Tide's advantage to 68-67.

"When we're full strength and we get everybody healthy, we're going to be tough," LSU coach Will Wade said. "To fight like that and play like that under the circumstances we had tonight, very impressed."

LSU entered the game without point guard Xavier Pinson, who's averaging 10.8 points and 4.6 assists, then lost leading rebounder Darius Days to an ankle injury. He played 12 minutes against the Crimson Tide, scoring five points with two rebounds.

Jaden Shackelford led the Crimson Tide (12-6, 3-3 Southeastern Conference) with 26 points, a return to form after averaging 14.6 points in Alabama's first five SEC games. He also had four rebounds and four steals.

Jahvon Quinerly scored 17 points for Alabama, and Ellis finished with 12 points, eight rebounds and three steals.

Quinerly came off the bench for the first time this season, the role he filled last year when he was named the Most Outstanding Player in the SEC Tournament. Freshman JD Davison started in his place.

"I have no problem with it. I just want to win basketball games," Quinerly said.

Murray scored 19 points for LSU (15-3, 3-3), which dropped its second straight.

Alabama was at the free-throw line frequently in the second half as LSU committed 18 fouls. The Crimson Tide made 21 of their 32 attempts, providing enough scoring despite shooting 33.9% from the field and 20% from 3-point range (7 of 35).

Alabama was No. 14 in the preseason AP Top 25 and picked by the SEC's coaches to finish second in the league. The opening weeks of the SEC schedule did not match those projections. But the Crimson Tide remain in striking distance of the top of the league, with games looming against ranked opponents Baylor, Auburn and Kentucky.

"I told our guys before the game, let's get back to it. We had a swagger about us last year where we knew we were going to come in and play harder than everybody we played," Alabama coach Nate Oats said. "If shots drop at a high rate like they did against LSU last year, we win by 34. If they don't drop, we still win the game because we're going to play hard."

No. 2 Auburn 83, Georgia 60

Walker Kessler had 15 points and six blocked shots to lead a half-dozen scorers in double figures for Auburn in a rout of Georgia.

The Tigers (17-1, 6-0 Southeastern Conference) built a 25-point lead by halftime and coasted to their 14th consecutive win, tied with Davidson for the nation's longest current streak. It's their best SEC start in 63 years.

Jaylin Williams scored 13 points, while Georgia transfer KD Johnson, Wendell Green Jr. and Jabari Smith all finished with 12. Allen Flanigan added 10 for the Tigers, who are the only SEC team without a league loss. Green had 11 assists and four steals against the Bulldogs (5-13, 0-5), the only SEC team without a league win.

Christian Wright led Georgia with 16 points, going 8 of 9 from the free-throw line. Noah Baummann and Braelen Bridges scored 11 apiece. The Bulldogs were without leading scorer Kario Oquendo for undisclosed reasons.

Georgia's Aaron Cook, a so-called super senior, became just the 18th Division I player to play in 150 games and scored nine.

No. 12 Kentucky 64, Texas A&M 58

Sahvir Wheeler scored 12 points to lead a balanced scoring attack and Kentucky used a strong second half to outlast Texas A&M.

The victory extended Kentucky's winning streak to four games and snapped an eight-game winning streak for Texas A&M (15-3, 4-1 SEC).

The Aggies were dominant early and led by as many as 13 in front of a record crowd of 14,036, but Kentucky (15-3, 5-1) chipped away at the lead before going on top midway through the second half and holding on for the win.

The win was No. 799 for coach John Calipari.

Henry Coleman led A&M with 17 points and was the only Aggie who scored in double figures.

No. 20 Xavier 68, DePaul 67

Jack Nunge scored 15 of his 23 points in the second half, and Xavier rallied past DePaul.

Colby Jones had 13 points for the Musketeers (14-3, 4-2 Big East), who trailed by as many as 12. Paul Scruggs finished with eight points and seven assists.

David Jones scored 26 points for DePaul (10-7, 1-6), and Brandon Johnson had 13. Yor Anei grabbed 10 rebounds.

The Blue Demons played without Javon Freeman-Liberty, who was held out after he aggravated a groin injury during Thursday's 96-92 victory over Seton Hall. The senior guard is averaging a team-high 21.1 points per game.


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