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Auburn Basketball travels to LSU for Tuesday Action

Ronnie Johnson (35) in January 18's win over LSU. (Photo: Auburn Athletics/Wade Rackley)

Auburn Men’s Basketball looks to snap a three-game losing streak this evening when they travel to Baton Rouge to face the LSU Tigers. Auburn fell to Texas A&M in their last game, 81-62 in College Station. The Aggies opened the game with a 12-2 run, and Auburn was unable to recover from the deficit. Texas A&M used their size to aid their win, as they outshot Auburn 69% to 34% with three starters towering 6’9” or taller. Mustapha Heron scored 20 points, while Ronnie Johnson continued his streak of hot performances by draining four three-pointers en route to a 12-point performance. Tuesday’s game with LSU will be the second time this season that the two teams have met, with Auburn winning the first game in Auburn Arena, 74-71 on January 18. Five players reached the double-figure mark in the game, led by Heron and TJ Dunans who scored 12, Anfernee McLemore scored a then career-high 11 points, he would top that just two games later by scoring 19 against South Carolina. The game had historical value, as the win over LSU was Head Coach Bruce Pearl’s 500th as a head coach. Since the game, Auburn is 4-5 including two wins over Alabama. The LSU Tigers have not fared well since the last meeting with Auburn, going 0-9. LSU won their second game of the SEC schedule against Missouri on January 4, but have lost every game since, currently sitting at 1-13 in league play. LSU had three players reach double-digits in their last game, led by Antonio Blakeney’s 28 but fell to Alabama 90-72 in Tuscaloosa last Saturday. The Crimson Tide scored 51 points in the opening half and played consistent basketball in the second half to keep the Tigers away. Blakeney leads LSU in scoring with 17.4 points per contest, two more Tigers average double-figures, including Duop Reath (12.8) and Brandon Sampson (11.3). Reath leads in rebounds with 6.3, Skylar Mays leads in assists with 3.8. The headline concerning Auburn Basketball this season has been its’ youth. On Tuesday, the Tigers will set a school record for most combined starts for freshmen in school history. The current mark is set at 93, which occurred during the 2005-06 season. Mustapha Heron has started in all 27 games to this point, Jared Harper 26, Danjel Purifoy 21, Austin Wiley 17, and Anfernee McLemore 1. Four freshmen are expected to start on Tuesday. If that holds, the number will extend to 94 starts. Auburn faces LSU Tuesday night at 6 P.M. inside the Pete Maravich Assembly Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

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