Jan. 21, 2009
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---Jodie Meeks scored a game-high 31 points, Patrick Patterson added 12 points and a career-high 18 rebounds and Perry Stevenson 13 points and 12 boards to lead Kentucky to a 73-64 victory over Auburn before 22,760 in Rupp Arena. DeWayne Reed
tied a career-high with 22 points while Rasheem Barrett
had a season-high 17 points to lead Auburn (11-7, 1-3).
The Tigers were outscored 26-2 from the free throw line. Frankie Sullivan scored five straight points to cap off a 13-2 Auburn run to give the Tigers a 51-48 lead with 9:09 to play. Kentucky (15-4, 4-0) responded with a decisive 12-0 run to take a 60-51 lead with 4:40 left.
The game was close throughout as there were 14 lead changes and eight ties.
"There is no doubt that defensively Kentucky is a very good team," said Auburn head coach Jeff Lebo. "Their intensity in the second half certainly got us out of sync. They pressured us very hard and they have some great size on the perimeter and they have some great shot-blocking ability and that really hurt us. Defensively, I think we did a good job for most of the game. Jodie Meeks really hurt us in transition. He plays with such confidence. Patrick Patterson was able to get to the foul."
In the first half, the largest lead by either team was four points and a Quantez Robertson 3-pointer gave Auburn a 31-28 lead with 2:43 before halftime. The Tigers led by one going for the last shot and Patterson blocked a Reed jumper with five seconds on the clock and assisted Ramon Harris on a layup just before the buzzer to give Kentucky a 34-33 halftime lead. Auburn forced 22 Kentucky turnovers, but the Wildcats outshot the Tigers from the foul line, 26-of-32 to 2-of-6.
Auburn returns to action at Arkansas Saturday at noon Central. The game will be televised by Raycom Sports.