Clemson dropped its opener in the Rainbow Classic Tuesday night 78-66 to UAB. The Tigers carried a four point lead into halftime after trailing for the majority of the first half. But in the second half, UAB really turned up the pressure defensively taking control of the game. UAB had 35 points off of turnovers.
Coming into the game, the Tigers knew this would be a very stiff test. UAB forced a season high 26 turnovers by the Tigers leading to the 35 points. 16 of the 26 turnovers came in the second half, which ultimately told the story of the game. The turnovers outweighed the fact that the Clemson outrebounded UAB 44 to 22.
In the first half, Sharrod Ford was very effective on the inside scoring 10 points. UAB used their full court pressure and half court traps to limit the Tigers' inside game. Also, Cliff Hammonds was the only Tiger to connect from beyond the arc. Shawan Robinson needed to return to his early season form tonight, but continued to struggle going 0-6 from three point land.
Hammonds led the Tigers in scoring with 20 points and Ford added 15 points, only five in the second half, but did Ford did achieve his 15th career double-double with 12 rebounds.
Now the Tigers will look to salvage two wins. Tipoff will be at 6 pm on Wednesday versus the loser of Indiana St vs. Southern California.