December 21, 2016 - Uncasville, Connecticut
The Tigers went up North for the 2nd time on the season and hoped for a better result after a heartbreaking loss 9 days earlier at Madison Square Garden.
This time, Auburn met Oklahoma, who made the 2016 Final Four before getting blown out by eventual National Champion Villanova. However, this Sooners team went a complete overhaul after the Final Four run and this was a completely different group of Sooners.
This also served as a homecoming for Mustapha Heron as the freshman from Waterbury was able to return to his home state in an Auburn uniform for the first time.
T.J. Dunans was looking to build off of his game winning shot in the previous game against Mercer. And that he did.
Dunans set the tone early leading Auburn with 13 1st half points and gave the Tigers a 34-22 halftime lead making a bucket just before halftime. Auburn led by 12 despite shooting just 4-14 from 3-point range.
Auburn would take their biggest lead at 45-28 following a 3-pointer by Danjel Purifoy but the Sooners would begin chipping away. Oklahoma would go on a 13-0 run to make it a 45-41 ballgame.
But as the Sooners got closer, the Tigers turned to Jared Harper.
Harper scored 16 of his 21 points in the 2nd half and was 11-12 from the free throw line. The duo of Harper and Dunans would score 22 of Auburn’s last 24 points. Each would score 21 in the game as the Tigers were able to hang on down the stretch.
Mustapha Heron would record his 1st career double-double in this one scoring 15 points and 12 rebounds as he, Harper and Dunans would combine for 57 of Auburn’s 74 points.
Here are the highlights!
Tomorrow at #90, we’ll look at the 2nd half of the trip to Connecticut as the Tigers would meet a 4-time National Champion on their home floor.