March 12, 2014
KT Harrell started fast enough, hitting three 3-pointers in the first half for Auburn (Lauren Barnard photo)
By Charles Goldberg
ATLANTA, Ga. -- Auburn's season of frustration came to a quiet end Wednesday night when South Carolina pelted the Tigers with 11 3-pointers in a 74-56 victory in the first game of the Southeastern Conference Tournament.
Auburn's season ended with a 14-16 overall record after finishing 6-12 in the SEC's regular season. South Carolina improved to 13-19 and advanced to a Thursday afternoon tournament game against Arkansas.
Auburn was trying to beat South Carolina for the third time this season. Those hopes melted away as the first half played out.
South Carolina was hot early, making seven 3-pointers, going 7-for-8 from the free throw line and leading 38-26 at the half. The Gamecocks also had a 20-11 rebounding advantage.
The Tigers' offense was off in the first half. Chris Denson, who almost won the SEC scoring title, attempted only two shots, making one. Tahj Shamsid-Deen was 0-for-4 from the field. KT Harrell's three first-half 3-pointers were the bright spot.
But South Carolina made sure there would be no comeback by scoring the first six points of the second half with two more 3-pointers. The Gamecocks led by 20 with 5:24 remaining.
Denson finished with 14 and moved into eighth place on Auburn's all-time scoring list, passing Charles Barkley, who was sitting behind the Tigers' bench. Harrell scored 13.
Check back for comments from coach Tony Barbee and players in this story.
Charles Goldberg is a Senior Writer at AuburnTigers.com. Follow him on Twitter: