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Lacey, Randolph lift Alabama over Arkansas 59-56

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Lacey, Randolph lift Alabama over Arkansas 59-56

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) Trevor Lacey and Levi Randolph hit 3 of 4 free throws in the final 17 seconds and Alabama held on for a 59-56 victory over Arkansas on Thursday night.

Lacey scored 14 points for the Crimson Tide (13-7, 5-2 Southeastern Conference), which held on for a fifth win in six games after losing 54-53 at Tennessee when he couldn't get off a final shot.

BJ Young hit a layup with 5 seconds left and then missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer for Arkansas (12-8, 3-4) after Randolph made two free throws.

Young, who led Arkansas with 14 points, managed to get a shot off with a behind-the-back dribble but overshot the rim. He scored 12 in the second half.

Lacey had six rebounds but also committed seven of Alabama's season-high 21 turnovers. Trevor Releford added 12 points and Nick Jacobs had 10 for Alabama.

Marshawn Powell had 11 points for the Razorbacks before fouling out.

Young missed all four of his 3-point attempts and the Razorbacks were just 3 of 19. They are now 0-5 away from home and have totaled 110 points in two straight losses.

The Tide shot just 7 of 23 (30 percent) in the second half but also made 14 of 19 free throws (74 percent).

Arkansas forced a turnover with the full-court press and Rickey Scott collected the loose ball and a layup with 51 seconds left to cut Alabama's lead to 56-54. The Tide then worked most of the shot clock down before Andrew Steele missed a 3-pointer.

Lacey grabbed the offensive rebound, drew Powell's fifth foul and hit the second of two free throws with 17 seconds remaining for a 57-54 lead.

Young then drove to the basket instead of trying to tie it with a 3-pointer, and the Razorbacks called a timeout before quickly fouling Randolph. He made both with 4.2 seconds remaining.

The Razorbacks, who had trailed by as many as 11 points in the first half, went on a 17-5 run to take the lead following Releford's technical foul early in the second half.

Young hit two free throws for a 42-39 lead midway through the second half. Lacey answered with two free throws, Releford had a reverse layup and Tide freshman Devonta Pollard scored inside to get Alabama back on track.

The Tide, which came in last in the SEC in rebounding, controlled the boards 38-29.

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John Wall and Bradley Beal sport Elena Delle Donne’s face mask in WNBA Playoffs

John Wall and Bradley Beal sport Elena Delle Donne’s face mask in WNBA Playoffs

The newest celebrity fashion statement in Washington D.C. is sporting Elena Delle Donne face mask.

Just ask Washington Wizards John Wall and Bradley Beal.

The two Wizards superstars made it out to the Entertainment and Sports Arena supporting their fellow D.C. athletes Thursday evening. The Mystics were playing Game 2 of the WNBA Semifinals against the Las Vegas Aces.

Wall attended Game 1 as well with the Wizards first-round draft pick Rui Hachimura. Several other Wizards were spotted throughout the first two games of the series. 

Since mid-July, Delle Donne has worn a face mask after suffering a nasal fracture in a game. The injury forced the 2019 WNBA MVP to miss two contests until being cleared for play. Even though she no longer is required to wear the mask, medically, Delle Donne continues to wear it for the remainder of the year.

Earlier in the regular season, Redskins running back Derrius Guice also took in a Mystics game in a Delle Donne mask.

Just next time, someone give John a hand. He’s recovering from an injury after all.

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Elena Delle Donne celebrates second WNBA MVP award by crediting others

Elena Delle Donne celebrates second WNBA MVP award by crediting others

WASHINGTON -- A lot can change in four years, and for Elena Delle Donne, that has certainly been the case. As she stood at the podium on Thursday at St. Elizabeth's Arena to accept the 2019 NBA MVP award, she reminisced on her journey since 2015, the first time she got the honors.

Back then she was 26 years old, playing for the Chicago Sky and "wide-eyed," as she put it. A blockbuster trade, several injuries and a wedding later, she is MVP again.

"I've definitely grown so much," Delle Donne said. "It's a different vibe now. I just have a different feel being so settled and happy where I am." 

Delle Donne is quick to deflect compliments and spent much of her press conference tipping her cap to others. She thanked her teammates and coaches and said she wouldn't be able to win MVP without them.

She also thanked the Mystics front office and ownership group as they were getting set for Game 2 of the WNBA Semifinals against the Las Vegas Aces.

"Thank you to the organization. This is a first-class organization that really makes coming to work nice," she said. 

"You get to show up and we have a chef cooking for us. It's just a phenomenal place to be a part of. It feels like a family and I absolutely love D.C."

Delle Donne's most effusive praise was reserved for her wife, Amanda. Delle Donne went into detail about how her support makes the success she has on the court possible.

"She's the one I get to go home to and she keeps my head straight. She has to deal with all my craziness. She makes my pregame meals and basically gets everything in order for me," Delle Donne said.

Though Delle Donne talked mostly about others, the occasion was to celebrate her. Whether she is comfortable talking about herself or not, her accomplishments speak for themselves. She is now one of six players in WNBA history to win multiple MVP trophies and the first to do so with two different teams.

She got 41 of 43 first-place votes this time around after placing second in the league in scoring (19.5 ppg), fifth in rebounding (8.3 rpg) and 11th in blocks (1.29 bpg). She was the first player in WNBA history to shoot at least 50 percent from the field, 40 percent from three and 90 percent from the free throw line.

Delle Donne is in the midst of a historic career. And now at 30 years old, she understands her place in the sport has context that goes way beyond trophies at stats.

"It's always incredible to know that something you've done will go down in history. It's even more inspiring to know that there are little girls looking up to me that maybe can do the same or do more. That's what I did when I was younger because I had them to look up to," she said.

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