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Tip-Off Countdown: #75 Auburn 80 Gardner-Webb 55

The night the Anfer-THREE was born.

NCAA Basketball: Auburn at Tennessee Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

December 6, 2017 - Auburn Arena

When things are going, they’re just going. When it comes to 3 pointers from Anfernee McLemore on a cold night in early December, this was so true.

Coming into this game with Gardner-Webb, Anfernee was 2-9 from 3 during his career. But after working on his 3-point shot in the offseason, Anfernee was ready to unleash this new aspect of his game and this was the night he really broke through in the 3-point department.

The Tigers took their 5 game winning streak into a matchup with the Big South’s Gardner-Webb Bulldogs. Auburn got off to a fast 10-2 start 2 minutes in capped off by Anfernee’s first 3-pointer of the night.

But it’s also worth pointing out that Anfernee didn’t star in this game alone. Desean Murray had an outstanding performance as well as he made a pair of 3s in the game’s first 4 minutes as Auburn led 16-4 early. Anfernee’s 2nd 3 came with 8:17 to go in the half. Ryan Sterritt and I were watching this game from the first row of the Jungle and this was quite the surprise to us. When Anfernee made his 3rd 3 in the final minute of the half, we could see how McLemore’s 3-point shooting could really help the team going forward. But he was also tearing it up on the defensive end as Anfernee blocked 4 of his 6 shots on the night in the 1st half. Auburn led 42-28 at halftime.

Anfernee started the 2nd half banking in his 4th 3 of the game as McLemore finished 4-4 from 3-point range on the night. McLemore finished the game with his first career double-double, scoring 17 points, with 11 rebounds while also blocking 6 shots.

One of the night’s highlights came after Anfernee’s 10th rebound when he ran the floor and finished an alley-oop dunk off of one of Jared Harper’s 10 assists. The dunk with 8:33 to go gave Auburn a 67-37 lead.

Malik Dunbar had some #ClassicMalik moments in this game as well. Malik had an incredible come from behind blocked of a layup early in the 2nd half and then had his own personal dunk contest later on in the 2nd half.

Desean Murray had 20 points and 7 rebounds to lead the Tigers in scoring. We touched on Anfernee’s game earlier but the Tigers got a balanced effort as all 9 Tigers in the rotation had at least 5 points. The 55 points allowed was the lowest opponent output on the season and Auburn moved to 7-1 on the season.

Here are the highlights!

Tomorrow at #74, we look once again at a matchup between an in-state rival.

War Eagle!