Saben Lee's 38 leads Vanderbilt to upset of Alabama

Kotsar leads South Carolina over Mississippi State

Vanderbilt guard Saben Lee (0) plays against Georgia in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Saturday, Feb. 22, 2020, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - Saben Lee scored a career-high 38 points, including 15 over the final five-plus minutes to lead Vanderbilt to an 87-79 upset of Alabama on Tuesday night.

Lee made six of seven 3-pointers for the Commodores (10-20, 2-15 Southeastern Conference), who snapped a seven-game losing streak.

Lee made three 3-pointers, scored on a couple of drives and hit two free throws over the final 5:12 to carry Vandy past the Crimson Tide (16-14- 8-9). The loss to the SEC's last-place team was likely a fatal blow to Alabama's already shaky NCAA tournament hopes barring a huge run at the league tournament.

Lee caught fire after going a combined 8-of-30 shooting for 24 points over the previous two games. He made 14 of 20 shots and also had eight rebounds and five assists.

Dylan Disu made four 3s and scored 14 for the Commodores, who also got 13 from Scotty Pippen Jr.

Alabama got virtually all of its scoring from three players.

Kira Lewis Jr. had 30 points and eight assists. Beetle Bolden made seven 3-pointers and scored 24. Jaden Shackelford scored all 18 of his points in the first eight minutes of the second half.

The rest of the team made 1 of 12 field-goal attempts for seven collective points.

Alabama did erase a 10-point second-half deficit to take the lead before Lee took over.

South Carolina 83, Mississippi State 71

COLUMBIA, S.C. - South Carolina forward Maik Kotsar scored 20 points on his senior night and pushed the Gamecocks to a win over Mississippi State.

The Gamecocks (18-12, 10-7 SEC) clinched their fourth winning conference season in five years and breathed life into their flagging NCAA Tournament hopes, which nearly flatlined after Saturday's loss at Alabama. The Bulldogs (19-11, 10-7) had a two-game winning streak snapped.

South Carolina is still in contention for a top-four finish in the SEC, which would be its fourth in five years, but needs help from Florida, to which it would lose a tiebreaker. Kotsar, A.J. Lawson and Keyshawn Bryant, who threw down two highlight-reel dunks among his 12 points, helped keep the Gamecocks in range.

South Carolina took control with a 20-0 first-half run, but Mississippi State responded with a 25-9 run to make it a two-point game at halftime. But with SEC player of the year candidate Reggie Perry hampered with foul trouble and Kotsar anchoring the Gamecocks' offense, South Carolina pulled away in the second half.

Tyson Carter led the Bulldogs with 24 points, including 10 straight in one second-half stretch.