Dec. 18, 2012
AUBURN - Chris Denson scored a season-high 20 points and had a highlight reel dunk, while Josh Wallace added a season-best 11 points with seven assists and three steals as Auburn defeated Tennessee Tech 81-62 on Tuesday in Auburn Arena for its third-straight victory.
"I liked the way we played offensively. We were aggressive," Auburn head coach Tony Barbee said. "We played off our defense. I thought we took care of the ball against their press in the first half. We only had four turnovers in the first half. I will take it. We had a lot of good numbers tonight. We had 19 assists tonight, which means we are sharing the ball. Fifty percent shooting in the second half, but we have to get guys playing better right now. We are playing unselfish and starting to make strides as a group."
Jordan Price scored 12 points off the bench and hit 3-of-3 from outside to extend his streak to 11-straight 3-pointers made. 11 made 3-pointers in a row ties the SEC mark set by Kevin Anglin from Vanderbilt in 1992.
The NCAA record for consecutive made 3-pointers is 15 by Northwestern's Todd Leslie in 1990.
Price scored 12 straight points for Auburn as the Tigers used a 12-2 run to take an 18-6 lead with 12:33 remaining in the first half. The freshman from Decatur, Ga. connected on three-straight 3-pointers and three free throws as Auburn expanded its lead.
"Wow," Barbee said. "I don't think I have [ever had a player make 11-straight 3-pointers], not the way he is shooting right now. It is not a surprise. He is shooting that way in practice and he works on it. Guys who don't practice that way, aren't making shots, because they aren't locked in. Jordan Price has been."
The scoring outburst by Price came over a stretch of just two minutes and 35 seconds from 15:08 in the first half to the 12:33 mark in the opening period. Price has scored in double figures in three straight games and in four of the last five contests.
Denson's highlight play came with 6:38 remaining in the first half. The 6-foot-2 junior guard took the feed from Allen Payne on the fast break and leapt high over Tennessee Tech's 6-foot-5 Matt Marseille for the left-handed flush.
He was fouled on the play and converted the free throw for a three-point play on the poster-worthy dunk that stretched Auburn's lead to 29-18. The Columbus, Ga.-native followed up with an acrobatic spinning 360-degree layup for a 38-21 advantage at the break to cap a 12-3 run and give Auburn its largest lead of the first half.
Price (12) and Denson (10) combined for 22 points in the first half. Denson has scored in double figures in all three games he has played this season.
Two free throws by Asauhn Dixon-Tatum gave Auburn a 20-point lead at 55-35 with 10:35 left in the game. Two more free throws by Denson widened the Tiger lead out to its largest at 68-40 with less than seven minutes remaining as he capped a 13-0 run.
Led by Price, the Auburn bench scored 35 points on the night.
The Tigers are in action next on Saturday when they host Winthrop at 7 p.m. in Auburn Arena. The game will be televised by CSS.