Lucas Hargrove led Auburn with a season-high 24 points. (File Photo)
Feb. 10, 2010
AUBURN----Lucas Hargrove had a season-high 24 points to go along with 11 rebounds to lead Auburn to an 82-63 victory over Georgia in Beard-Eaves-Memorial Coliseum on Wednesday. Tay Waller added 16 points, DeWayne Reed 12 and Frankie Sullivan 11 for the Tigers.
Auburn (12-12, 3-6) used a 12-2 run near the end of the first half to break open a 32-29 Auburn lead at the 4:41 mark. The Tigers made it 44-31 just over two minutes later and led at the half, 45-36.
"Defensively, we were pretty sharp," said Auburn head coach Jeff Lebo. "Our big focus was on (Trey) Thompkins and his foul trouble was a big factor in helping us. He's their go to guy when they need a bucket.
"Lucas was awfully good offensively. They had a hard time defending him in his quickness on the perimeter, and that was a big difference in the game. He shot the ball well from 3-point range, which certainly opened things up for him driving the ball to the bucket."
The last time Georgia (10-12, 2-7) had the deficit below double digits was at 53-44 six minutes into the second half. The Tigers pushed their lead to 14 halfway through the second period and steadily grew their lead to 69-50 on a Sullivan 3-pointer with 6:11 remaining.
Hargrove's double-double was his sixth of the season as the Auburn-Georgia series is deadlocked at 87-87. Georgia's Travis Leslie led the Bulldogs with 19 points and a career-high 17 rebounds.
"It was a lot of fun," said Hargrove. "This is about the time last year that we got on our roll and hopefully that can happen again this year. It was good because sometimes you can work really hard in practice, and it doesn't show up in the game. I feel like the coaches pushed us really hard in practice this week and it showed tonight."
The Tigers held the Bulldogs to 36.5 percent shooting from the field and 5-of-16 from 3-point range. Auburn only allowed Trey Thompkins, the SEC's second leading scorer coming in with an average of 17.5 points, to only muster six points to go along with six turnovers after fouling out in only 13 minutes.
Auburn shot 43.8 percent from the field, made 8-of-27 shots from 3-point range and 69.2 percent (18-of-26) from the foul line. Brendon Knox added nine points in 22 minutes off the bench and Auburn forced 19 Georgia turnovers and outscored the taller Bulldogs 32-18 in the paint.
Auburn plays at Mississippi State in Humphrey Coliseum in Starkville on Saturday at 6 pm Central on Fox Sports South. February 10, 2010