June 15, 2024

AUBURN, Ala. (AP) – Jaylin Williams and Johni Broome scarcely missed from 3-point range and Auburn shredded the Southeastern Conference´s top defense.

If Williams returns, expect fewer charges taken | Whole Hog Sports

The result was another runaway victory over a fellow SEC contender.

Williams scored 23 points and Broome added 21 to lead No. 13 Auburn to a 101-61 blowout of 11th-ranked South Carolina on Wednesday night, the Tigers’ most lopsided win over a ranked team.

“When you get nine 3-balls from your starting frontcourt, it kind of makes everything you might try to do offensively work,” Auburn coach Bruce Pearl said.

The Tigers (20-5, 9-3 Southeastern Conference) rolled to a 22-point halftime lead and snapped South Carolina´s seven-game winning streak. They moved into a second-place tie with the Gamecocks (21-4, 9-3) in the league standings, just behind Alabama at 9-2.

Auburn beat the 15th-ranked Crimson Tide 99-81 a week earlier at Neville Arena.

Both big men for Auburn did much of their damage from long range, and the team secured its sixth 20-win season in the last seven years.

“After a slow start we made shots and played with great freedom,” Pearl said. “We also disrupted them offensively. We turned them over and were aggressive and made plenty of offense out of our defense.”

Williams shot 5 of 7 on 3-pointers, making four in the first half. Broome was 4 of 5 and drained all three attempts in the second half.

They enjoyed their shooting success, jokingly unveiling a new nickname in unison: “1-2-3. Splash Bros.”

“They were giving us a little bit of space so it´s that point where you shoot it or pass it,” Broome said. “But once we see that first one go in, we´ve got that confidence.”

Tre Donaldson had 11 points and Chad Baker-Mazara added 10 for the Tigers, who blitzed the SEC’s leading defense. The Gamecocks came in allowing just 64 points per game and hadn’t permitted more than 77.

Meechie Johnson had 22 points for the Gamecocks but was called for a technical foul after shoving Baker-Mazara late.

Collin Murray-Boyles added 19 points and seven rebounds for South Carolina. The freshman was coming off a 31-point performance against Vanderbilt when he made 14 of 17 shots. B.J. Mack scored 14.

“They were really good. We weren´t that good,” Gamecocks coach Lamont Paris said. “That´s what happens when you have that combination. They played some inspired, determined, intentional basketball in their energy, in their demeanor, in their defensive effort.

“And then they also played very well.”

The Tigers got off to a blazing start, building a 50-28 halftime lead capped by Baker-Mazara’s 3-pointer with two seconds left. Williams made three straight 3s during one sequence after Auburn took control with an 18-3 run.

South Carolina did manage to cut it to 16 early in the second half but Broome scored Auburn’s next eight points, including a pair of 3s. The margin just kept growing wider from there.

The teams have met 50 times, and this was the first time both entered the game ranked. It turned into a mismatch.

BIG PICTURE

South Carolina: Shot 34.6% and dropped its seventh straight game against the Tigers. … Johnson and Murray-Boyles combined for 21 of the Gamecocks’ 28 first-half points.

Auburn: Made 19 of 30 shots in the first half (63.3%). … The Tigers are 13-0 at Neville Arena and remain the only SEC team without a home loss.

 

 

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