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GAME RECAP: Alabama 70, Auburn 58

Tigers hung around for a while, but didn’t have enough in the end.

NCAA Basketball: Auburn at Alabama Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

We’re now down to one final game in the 2020-2021 season for Auburn, and we’re mercifully done with tonight’s game that saw the Tigers slog through a loss in Tuscaloosa.

Auburn fell to Alabama 70-58 with Sharife Cooper missing yet another game due to injury, and the Tigers played through the sloppiest game of the season with 23 turnovers (a season high). The Tigers hit just 40% of their shots and made only 6 three-pointers, while the Tide made its hay off of Auburn’s mistakes, scoring 24 points off of turnovers.

Alabama wasn’t as hot as they’ve been this season, either, and the game wasn’t quite the offensive showdown that we saw a couple of months ago. Instead, both sides struggled to explode on offense, and the second half was like pulling teeth until late when Alabama started to hit a few shots to pull away.

Auburn never led in this one, but hung around enough in the second half to make things interesting. They cut the deficit to just 5 points before the Tide hit a run that effectively ended the game.

The game began on a 5-0 run for Bama, but Auburn nearly caught up and cut the lead to 10-8 after a Devan Cambridge bucket and Dylan Cardwell foul shots. However, Alabama pushed ahead and built a large margin of 24-10 with back to back threes from Jaden Shackelford. Those makes came near the midpoint of the first half, but both sides enjoyed a three-minute scoreless streak in the late moments of the half before Auburn pulled within a 32-20 deficit. At the break, Auburn had managed to trim that hole down to just 10 points and trailed 37-27.

If the late moments of the first half were disjointed, the second half began like a day at the dentist. By the first timeout, both teams had scored just 5 points and the lead stayed at 10 points for Alabama. With the Tide leading 48-37, Auburn started to string something together. The Tigers posted a 10-4 run to pull witih two possessions at 52-47. That was as close as the Tigers would get, as Bama started to hit some shots for the first time tonight and pulled away. Over the latter half of the second period, the Tide hit a trio of threes, with Jaden Shackelford taking over and pushing Alabama out to the 70-58 win in the end.

Auburn was led by Jaylin Williams’ 13 points, with Devan Cambridge chipping in 11. Jaden Shackelford led all scorers with 23 points and a 5-9 night from behind the arc.

Up next for Auburn, it’s the final game of the season on Saturday, with Mississippi State in a makeup game from last weekend. After that, it’ll be the long dark of the offseason.

FINAL STATS