Auburn turned on its best performance of the year tonight in Cancun as the Tigers dismantled the Bradley Braves 85-64 to improve to 5-0 on the young season and advance to the title game tomorrow night against Northwestern.
The Tigers exploded out of the gate, shot a season-best 47% from three and 56% overall, while getting double-digit outputs from five difference players. Auburn controlled the glass, forced 15 turnovers, and blocked 8 shots on the way to the victory.
This one started out much smoother for Auburn offensively than games we’ve seen thus far in 2022. Jaylin Williams hit a pair of early threes and assisted on a Johni Broome layup to start the game, and the Tigers led 12-2 less than 3 minutes in. At the midway point of the first half, Williams’ dunk made it 29-19 in favor of the Tigers, and Auburn was off and running. A three from Allen Flanigan with 6:30 left until halftime pushed the margin to 15 points, but Bradley made a bit of a run to close the gap. However, Wendell Green’s chaotic drive to the hoop as time expired put Auburn ahead 45-32 at the intermission.
The second half started with two quick buckets from Broome, and the Tigers grew their lead to 50-32. Chance Westry came into the game and made his presence known with an old-fashioned three point play before a drive and alley-oop to Flanigan for a dunk. That score gave Auburn a 65-48 lead with 12:33 remaining in the game. Near the midpoint of the half, Yohan Traore gave Auburn a 20-point edge at the foul line, and then a few minutes later a three from Green put Auburn up 77-57. A three-point play from Green gave the Tigers their largest lead of the night at 81-59, before K.D. Johnson and Westry pushed that margin to 26 points before closing things out easily in the end.
PLAYER OF THE GAME
Jaylin Williams finished with 11 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists, and went 2-3 from downtown. He got the Tigers started tonight offensively, and really made Bradley play from behind within the first two minutes of the game. He was one of five guys in double figures, and there’s no real wrong answer for this tonight, but Williams was the one who kicked it off.
Auburn will play tomorrow night against Northwestern, after the Wildcats beat Liberty tonight in their side of the Cancun Challenge. Tip-off comes at 7:30 pm CST/8:30 pm EST.