Dec. 5, 2008
AUBURN, Ala. - The No. 14 Auburn women's basketball team (9-0) had a record-setting night Friday as the Tigers posted a 119-54 victory over visiting Sam Houston State (1-6) at the Beard-Eaves-Memorial Coliseum. The 119 points in the game set a new Auburn record for points in a single game while the 65-point margin of victory ranks 12th all-time at Auburn.
Senior Whitney Boddie led the Tiger charge in the win, tallying the first triple-double of her career as she finished with 13 points, 10 rebounds and 12 assists. The triple-double is just the second all-time at Auburn by either the men's or women's teams.
Boddie was part of a pack of seven Tigers that finished the game in double figures. Junior KeKe Carrier led the team with a season-high 19 points. DeWanna Bonner was right behind her with 18 points and five rebounds while Alli Smalley added on 13 points and three steals.
"I thought we had some good offensive efforts from several players," said Auburn head coach Nell Fortner. "When you do things like break the school scoring record and have a player with a triple-double, those are things that don't come easy, I don't care who you're playing and I was pleased with those two facts."
Auburn shot 62.3 percent from the field, knocking down 48 of its 77 attempts. That kind of proficiency is something Fortner said was key to the offensive performance.
"I did not even know what the school record was in points, but we just were shooting the ball well," said Fortner. "We shot the ball well and that's what happens in 40 minutes when you shoot the ball well."
As for Boddie's triple-double, Fortner said that when she is playing well, the team follows suit and that is exactly what happened Friday night.
"We were just feeling it tonight and I thought Whitney Boddie really had a good overall game and people feed off of her. I think she got us started on a good note," said Fortner.
Boddie was close at halftime, posting nine points, eight rebounds and six assists at the break.
"At halftime, Coach Fortner and the rest of the team gave me the challenge to get the triple-double," said Boddie. "I really was not thinking about it, but they were like, `Get in there and get some rebounds.'"
She sealed the triple-double at the 6:21 mark in the second half, pulling down a rebound on a missed three-point attempt by Sam Houston State's Brittany Brooks. She joined Marita Payne as the only Tigers ever, on either the mens' or women's teams, to tally a triple-double.
Payne picked hers up in a 62-51 win over Arkansas on Feb. 3, 2005. She posted 15 points, 12 rebounds and 13 blocks in the win.
A big part of the win was the Auburn bench as it accounted for 56 of the team's 119 points. Carrier came alive off the bench, going a perfect 9-of-9 from the field while hitting her lone free throw attempts for a team-best 19 points.
Sam Houston State played 14 players in the game, compared to 10 on Auburn's roster, with Mary Beth Renz leading the team off the bench with 12 points and five rebounds. Whitney Smith also picked up five rebounds and was the only other Bearkat to finish in double figures with 10 points.
Auburn held SHSU to 19-of-63 shooting from the field for 30.2 percent. The Bearkats could only muster 18 points in the first half, compared to Auburn's 62, on 18.9 percent shooting.
Auburn took the lead early in the game, scoring 16 of the first 18 points of the game. The Tigers held a 37-9 advantage at the 10:00 mark in the first half and led by 44 points, 62-18, at halftime.
"Our whole goal was to come out and jump on the team quick," said Boddie. "Coach Fortner always talks about that and it is what we did. We were just trying to keep improving and establishing ourselves throughout the game."
Playing the team's fast-paced offense, Bonner said the quickness in the team's transition game opened up some opportunities and gave the team a chance to score some points.
"We just came out and pushed the ball and every time we pushed the ball, we got some good looks," said Bonner. "We were focused, took smart shots and knocked them down."
Sam Houston State shot better in the second half, improving to 46.2 percent, but the Tigers still out-scored the Bearkats 57-36 in the final period. A Sherell Hobbs jumper at 11:32 gave Auburn a 50-point lead and her layup at 7:41 gave Auburn its 100th point and a 61-point lead.
It was the first time for Auburn to score 100 points in a game under Fortner and the first since defeating Northwestern State, 103-52, on Dec. 30, 2003.
Auburn forced 26 Bearkat turnovers in the game while committing only 12 of its own. The Tigers also picked up six blocks, led by Carrier's three, and 17 steals. Sherell Hobbs led the Tigers in steals with four while Bonner picking up one. But, Bonner's was a big one as it was the 170th of her career, a mark that ranks her in a tie for ninth all-time at Auburn in career steals with Charlene Thomas (1984-87) and Tasha Hamilton (1997-2001).
Bonner also moved up in another list as her 18 points give her 1,624 on her career, jumping her past Mae Ole Bolton for sixth place all-time at Auburn in career scoring. Bonner is currently 92 points behind Natasha Brackett's fifth-place total of 1,716 and 444 behind Becky Jackson's Auburn record of 2,068 points.
Auburn hits the road Sunday for its final game before the Holiday break as the Tigers travel to Lynchburg, Va., for a game against Liberty. The Flames are currently 1-5 on the season, coming off a 77-64 loss at James Madison on Tuesday.
Tipoff is slated for 2 p.m. CT at Liberty's Vines Center. Live stats and video will be available at www.LibertyFlames.com.