Tide Rolls over MSU

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) _ Every time Mississippi State rallied, Rod Grizzard responded. Grizzard scored 17 of his 27 points in the second half and keyed two pivotal runs as the 16th-ranked Crimson Tide beat Mississippi State 72-59 Saturday night. ``In both halves, I thought Grizzard took over,'' Bulldogs coach Rick Stansbury said. ``He was the difference in the game.'' The Tide (13-2, 2-1 Southeastern Conference) held the Bulldogs to 34 percent shooting and their lowest scoring output of the season. Mississippi State (9-4, 1-2) came in averaging 82 points and hadn't been held below 68 points. It was the Bulldogs' seventh straight SEC road loss. The Tide didn't score in the first five minutes of the second half, but only lost four points off a 39-30 lead. Grizzard then scored 15 points to spearhead a 21-10 Alabama run. ``He answered every time,'' Alabama coach Mark Gottfried said. ``In the second half, we gave Mississippi State five free minutes of basketball. Luckily we didn't lose the lead. We came out nonchalant, but luckily, it didn't really hurt us.'' Mississippi State couldn't come closer than 13 points after that. Grizzard hit four 3-pointers and went 7-of-9 on free throws, while Erwin Dudley had 13 points and 15 rebounds for the Tide. Dudley had 10 points and 11 rebounds in the first half. Doc Martin added 13 points. Tang Hamilton led the Bulldogs with 14 points, but had only three in the second half. Antonio Jackson scored 12 points, all on second-half 3-pointers, and Robert Jackson added 11 points and 13 rebounds. Alabama, 8-0 at home, was coming off an 86-69 loss at No. 4 Tennessee. Grizzard, who was reprimanded by the SEC for taunting the crowd after the LSU game, scored just eight points. The Tide took the lead for good midway with a 12-0 run midway through the first half and led 39-30 at halftime. Alabama didn't commit a turnover for the first 10 minutes then had six in the next three as the Bulldogs pulled to 28-26. Then, Grizzard scored seven points in the final five minutes of the half. Mississippi State and Alabama were the top two rebounding teams in the league, each collecting 47 in the game. Mississippi State went 4-of-9 from the free-throw line and 7-of-23 from 3-point range. ``We showed no determination on the boards,'' said guard Marckell Patterson. ``We were not blocking out. ``We fell behind quickly and it took us out of (our) rhythm. We wanted to have a good defensive effort, but it wasn't there tonight.'' Alabama has won 65 of 77 meetings between the teams in Tuscaloosa.