Auburn beat Georgia by 17 points yesterday afternoon to complete a season sweep of the Bulldogs for the first time in 32 years. Jared Harper and Mustapha Heron combined for 43 points and more than made up for the absence of Bryce Brown, who was out with a minor shoulder injury.
The most impressive things about Auburn’s win at UGA: Tigers never trailed, outrebounded the Bulldogs, racked up 15 second chance points, and hit double-digit 3-pointers for the fifth time in their last seven games. And did all that without their leading scorer.— Blake Lovell (@theblakelovell) February 10, 2018
The above tweet sums up the victory about as succinctly as you could do it. Watching what was a frustrating game at times still resulted in a game that Auburn never trailed and was honestly never really in much danger of losing. Every time Georgia made a run and cut it close, the Tigers answered.
Tyree Crump pulled the Bulldogs within two at 33-31 by hitting a three in the final three minutes of the first half, but Auburn strung together a tip-in by Desean Murray, a Mustapha Heron three, and a Jared Harper layup to run off a 7-0 spurt and take a 40-31 lead at halftime.
In the second half, when Auburn could not get out of its own way on offense, Georgia couldn’t close the gap because the Tiger defense stood tall. Auburn went from the 18:53 mark to the 13:34 mark without scoring, but Georgia could only cut the lead to four. Not long after that, it ballooned to ten, then thirteen, then seventeen. When it was all said and done, the Tigers got out with a key road win and rebounded from the loss in the midweek.
Like we mentioned above, without Bryce Brown, it was down to Jared Harper...
Jared Harper just ripped the lil bulldog heart out of Uga’s lil bulldog chest pic.twitter.com/GUpPsQW9kW— ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ (@SkyeUnderwood) February 10, 2018
...and his 24 points (12 of which were scored in the opening ten minutes). Oh, and Mustapha Heron had a pretty good day as well...
...and when they teamed up, it was also nice.
Mustapha Heron with the one hand reversal off the backdoor dime from Jared Harper pic.twitter.com/5rcXnripUr— ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ (@SkyeUnderwood) February 10, 2018
Aside from the Harper/Heron connection, Malik Dunbar got the start in place of Brown, and did well despite a few obvious nerves.
He was part of that trio of guards that made life really difficult for Georgia.
So check out the highlights from this one!
Auburn’s tenth win of the year in the SEC puts them at 10-2, a full two games up on Tennessee again (thanks, Bama, I guess). Now that the Vols are 8-4, Auburn just needs to finish 14-4 to eliminate the Vols for the regular season title. If Auburn does indeed go 14-4, the only team that can overtake them in the standings would be Florida, but the Gators need to win out, and that includes beating Auburn. The Tigers likely have to beat South Carolina twice, and then split the remaining four games vs Kentucky, vs Alabama, @ Arkansas, and @ Florida. If Auburn gets to 15 wins, the SEC is theirs.
Let’s also not forget that while we’re still lamenting the loss to Texas A&M, things may not be so terrible for Auburn when the polls are released about 24 hours from now. In the top fifteen this week, Villanova, Virginia, Purdue, Duke, Kansas, Saint Mary’s, Arizona, and Tennessee also took losses. That bodes well for Auburn staying in the top ten when the polls come out, and on the 2-seed line for the most part when new bracketology gets released.
Hey, it’s going to be wild on Valentine’s Day at Auburn Arena. What better way to romance your lover than to watch the Tigers rough up a spiraling Kentucky team at home? War Eagle!