Huge Second Half Elevates No. 17 Auburn over Georgia
AUBURN, Ala. – The No. 17 Auburn basketball team outscored Georgia 53-25 in the second half en route to a 79-65 victory Saturday night. With the win, the Tigers (17-2, 5-1 SEC) set a program record with their 11th consecutive win at Auburn Arena.
“Not everybody had it tonight, but we had enough to get a great win,” head coach Bruce Pearl said. “What an environment and what a great win. Georgia is good. They’re not done. Just take my word for it. That’s an NCAA tournament team.”
Auburn was led by Bryce Brown who had 28 points on 9 of 15 shooting, including 5 of 9 from downtown. Mustapha Heron notched 14 points, while Jared Harper added 13 points and six assists.
The Tigers produced a season-high 27 points off turnovers and had 14 fastbreak points.
Despite shooting 25 percent in the first half, Auburn hit 59 percent in the second half on 17 of 29 from the field.
Georgia (12-6, 3-4) came out of the gates on fire and made 14 of its 25 shots in the first half and took a 40-26 lead into the locker room.
Auburn flipped the script from the opening whistle in the second half. The Tigers rattled off 12 of the opening 14 points and, following a steal and dunk by Heron, took the lead at 43-42 with 13:45 remaining.
Auburn continued to ramp up the pressure on the defensive end. The Tigers did not allow a single bucket by the Bulldogs until there was 6:41 left in the game – a mark the spanned over 13 minutes.
In that span, Auburn used a 32-10 surge to hold an 11-point lead at 61-50. A pair of free throws by Harper with 37 seconds remaining gave the Tigers their biggest lead of the game at 17 when the score was 79-62.
Auburn closed out the result, 79-65.
Georgia was paced by Yante Maten with 17 points and nine rebounds. Juwan Parker had 16 points after going 4 of 6 from behind the arc.
The Tigers return to the road Wednesday with a tilt against Missouri. Tip-off in Columbia, Mo. is set for 8 p.m. CT on the Auburn Sports Network and SEC Network.