Nov. 19, 2006
AUBURN - Auburn rallied from an 11-point halftime deficit, holding East Tennessee State to 22 percent shooting in the second half as the Tigers defeated the Buccaneers, 64-58, Sunday in the first round of the South Padre Invitational at Beard-Eaves-Memorial Coliseum.
"The defensive intensity in the second half was much better," head coach Jeff Lebo said. We shot the ball very poorly in this game and East Tennessee had a lot to do with that. We had some looks, but we just couldn't get the ball in the basket, especially in the first half.
"DeWayne (Reed) and Quantez (Robertson) together, in the second half, were factors in the game defensively. We finally got some balls in the basket even though we shot the ball poorly. We found a way to win and I think we were very lucky to win."
Trailing 34-23 at halftime, the Tigers (3-0) opened the second half on an 18-5 run and took a 41-39 lead with 13:09 left, its first since the opening minute of the game. Auburn stretched its lead to 54-47 with 6:44 left after a free throw from Archie Miaway before ETSU (2-2) rallied.
The Tigers rebounded from 25 percent shooting (8-of-31) in the first half to shoot 54 percent in the second half (13-of-24). Auburn had 32 points off 28 ETSU turnovers.
East Tennessee State shot 52 percent in the first half and led by as many as 12 points. The Bucs were led by Courtney Pigram with 19 points and Mike Smith with 13.
Auburn returns to action Tuesday at 7 pm Central when the Tigers host Miles College in the second round of the South Padre Invitational.