March 14, 2009
Auburn improves to 22-10, while Florida falls to 23-10.
With the victory, Auburn snapped a 10-game losing streak to the Gators.
Auburn's most recent win over Florida was 78-70 at the 2000 SEC Tournament in Atlanta.
The Tigers continue their late-season surge, winning for the ninth time in their last 10 and improving from a 13-9 record to the current 22-10.
Auburn's lone loss in that stretch was 79-72 at SEC regular season champion LSU.
Before tonight, Auburn has dropped its last three SEC Tournament games.
Auburn's Jeff Lebo improves to 2-4 in SEC Tournament action, while Florida's Billy Donovan drops to 17-10. Donovan is the active leader in SEC Tournament coaching victories.
Auburn trailed 29-28 at halftime and now stands 6-9 when behind at the break. Florida falls to 21-3 when leading at intermission.
Florida led by as many as eight points (23-15) in the first half and never trailed. In fact, Auburn did not lead until 44-43 on a three-pointer by Tay Waller with 8:14 left in the game.
That shot sparked a 10-3 Tigers run over the next 2:15 that made it 51-46.
Back on Jan. 14 in Auburn, Florida defeated the Tigers 68-65.
Auburn placed four scorers in double figures, led by Korvotney Barber and Frankie Sullivan with a dozen each. Barber added 10 rebounds for the winners.
The Gators shot a season-low 36.1 percent (22-of-61) from the field.
Their previous low was 38.9 percent (21-of-54) this past Sunday in a win over Kentucky.
Florida was led by Alex Tyus with a double-double, his fourth of the year. Tyus finished with a game-high 21 points and 11 rebounds. Nick Calathes also had 11 boards to tie for game honors.
Better-seeded teams are 7-1 in this year's tournament. Mississippi State's win over South Carolina is the only "bracket upset" thus far.
Shooting in this year's first two rounds was 42.6 percent (406-of-952) from the field, 30.0 percent (92-of-307) from three-point distance and 73.5 percent (194-of-264) from the free throw line. The average score thus far is 75-62. Last season in Atlanta, shooting through the first two rounds was 46.1 percent (432-of-937) from the field, 34.8 percent (116-of-333) from three-point range and 70.7 percent (270-of-382) from the line. The average score through eight games last year was 81-76.
The losing teams in this tournament have scored exactly 58 points in four of the eight games.
Attendance improved for the fourth straight session with the evening announcement of 14,128. Tournament total now is 50,657 for an average of 12,664.