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Auburn Pounds Tulane 72-52 for Spot in WNIT Quarterfinals

AUBURN -- Auburn keeps playing, Tyrese Tanner keeps scoring and the Tigers keep winning in the WNIT.

Tanner's latest tournament exploits featured her first double-double -- 25 points and 11 rebounds -- to lead the Tigers to a 72-52 win over Tulane in Auburn Arena on Wednesday night. The Tigers advanced to the WNIT Elite Eight, and will play the winner of Thursday's Bowling Green-Drexel game at a site and time to be determined.

Auburn has easily swept through its three WNIT games -- winning 80-57, 84-66 and now 72-52 -- with Tanner leading the way. She's scored 29, 24 and 25 in those wins.

"I don't know what has come over Tyrese, but I hope it stays with her throughout the rest of the WNIT and her senior year," said Auburn coach Terri Williams Flournoy.

That's her best run of the season.

"I'm glad it happened now. I just want us to keep winning to get a championship," Tanner said.

It was a game of big runs by Auburn, and comebacks by Tulane. The Green Wave cut one Auburn lead from 15 points to 49-44 until a big 3-pointer from unlikely outside shooter Najat Ouardad just beat the shot clock and turned the momentum back to the Tigers.

"I was ready to knock it down because I knew it was going to make a big difference," Ouardad said.

Blanche Alverson followed with a 3-pointer of her own and Tulane was done.

"It was big. We had cut it to 4, and I thought we had contained them pretty well," said Tulane coach Lisa Stockton. "Alverson hit one right after that. That took the winds out of our sails a little bit."

So did Auburn's defense. The Tigers broke the school record for steals -- now at 396 -- with 11 against Tulane. Auburn ran its season total for forced turnovers to 692, 10 away from the school record.

"It's our system that is helping us win games, and our system is defense," said Williams.

Auburn outrebounded Tulane 46-33, too.

Tanner's sister, Tra'Cee Tanner, added 12 points for Auburn. Alverson added 10.


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