Dec. 15, 2012
AUBURN - Chris Denson scored a season-high 17 points with a career-best six rebounds and Jordan Price added 14 points on 4-of-4 shooting from outside as Auburn defeated Furman 64-50 on Saturday in Auburn Arena.
"We came out with good defensive energy," Auburn head coach Tony Barbee said. "We didn't come out as sharp offensively as I would have liked. Defensively, we were really good. I thought we got content with the 15 point lead at halftime. I told the guys it is not about who we play, it is about us getting better. Obviously, we want to win against whoever we play against, but tonight was not good enough for some of the teams we have coming up fairly soon. I think they understand it. We have to mature and grow as a team."
After falling behind 7-2 early, Auburn (4-5) used a 9-0 run to take the lead at 11-7 with 15:20 remaining in the first half. The run was fueled by a pair of baskets from Denson, who made his second-straight start. The Tigers widened their lead to its largest of the first half on a tip-in by Sullivan at the halftime buzzer and held at 35-20 advantage at the break.
Furman (3-6) was unable to close Auburn's lead to single digits in the second half, reaching 11 with 12 minutes left, 44-33, thanks to an 8-2 run. The Paladins made one more run, drawing within 12 with three minutes left, but Denson countered for Auburn with a three-point play and a 59-44 lead with 2:30 on the clock.
Price was perfect from 3-point range on Saturday and he hit his fourth trey with 1:34 left for a 62-46 lead. The freshman from Decatur, Ga. has hit eight-straight 3-pointers dating back to Tuesday's win over Grambling State.
Sullivan, the SEC's leading scorer at 18.5 ppg entering Saturday, posted his seventh double-figure scoring game of the season with 11 points to go with five rebounds and a career-high seven assists. Asauhn Dixon-Tatum set a new career high with nine rebounds.
Colin Reddick led Furman with 14 points while Kendric Ferrara added 10. Led by Price, Auburn's bench outscored the Paladin reserves 23-8. The Tigers had 42 rebounds to finish one off their season high total.
The Tigers are in action next on Tuesday when they host Tennessee Tech at 7 p.m. in Auburn Arena.