Auburn Closes Regular Season Saturday with Missouri
Head Coach Bruce Pearl during Auburn's game with Ole Miss on January 7 (Photo: Auburn Athletics/Wade Rackley)
Auburn Men’s Basketball will look to bounce back following a mid-week loss on Saturday, by battling Missouri on Saturday afternoon at 2:30 P.M. inside Auburn Arena. Last time out, Auburn had a seven-point halftime lead before Georgia’s JJ Frazier gave the Dawgs momentum by nailing two three-pointers to open the second half. Auburn would keep the game close, but a last-second shot attempt by Jared Harper was off the mark, and Georgia held on to win 79-78. Though the decision was not what Coach Bruce Pearl and the Tigers wanted, there was some upside to the game. The storyline recently for Auburn has been second-half struggles. Whether it be losing a large lead, or allowing their opponent to score 60+ points in the half, Auburn seemed to struggle with closing out games. The Tigers played the Bulldogs closely in the second half, never allowing their lead to exceed five points. Auburn also had six players reach double-figures, led by Bryce Brown’s 15. Brown went 5-7 from beyond the arc in the game. Overall, Mustapha Heron was the top performer, scoring 13 points while bringing in 9 boards. Austin Wiley was next with 10 points and 8 rebounds. The leading scorer for Georgia was Frazier, who finished with 31. Missouri enters the game with a 7-22 overall record, 2-15 in SEC play. Do not let that record fool you, however. The two wins that the Tigers have this season have been really solid and may have caused a dip in these two teams’ RPI. On February 4th, KJ Walton went 6-9 from the field, scoring 16 as Missouri defeated Arkansas 83-78. After losing a tough game to Texas A&M the following Wednesday, the Tigers welcomed Vanderbilt to Columbia. A Jordan Barnett free-throw broke a 44-all tie with 10:36 remaining in the game, and Missouri never looked back. The Tigers defeated the Commodores 72-52. The Tigers have been winless since the Vanderbilt blowout on February 11. Since then, Missouri has lost close games to Alabama and Ole Miss. Auburn defeated Missouri in Columbia on January 10. Heron scored seven of Auburn’s final 11 points to move Auburn past Missouri, 77-72. In the game, Heron had 16 points and nine rebounds. Like many games, Auburn’s bench contributed heavily. 43 points came from the hands of Auburn’s bench, led by Ronnie Johnson and Bryce Brown’s 13. Auburn battles Missouri to close out the regular season on Saturday, tip is scheduled for 2:30 inside Auburn Arena.