Auburn, AL — In a competitive, in-state rivalry game, the Auburn Tigers (21-1, 9-0 SEC) took care of business and defeated the Alabama Crimson Tide by a score of 100-81. Eastern Kentucky transfer Wendell Green Jr. led Auburn in scoring with 23 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists off the bench. Jaden Shackelford led all players with 26 points.
Auburn freshman Jabari Smith was recently named to the John R. Wooden Award watch list in averaging 15.6 points and 6.8 rebounds. Walker Kessler, K.D. Johnson and Green round out the Tigers’ balanced attack.
Coming off a huge win at home against No. 4 Baylor, the Crimson Tide (14-8, 4-5 SEC) looked to secure another top-five victory on the road. Their backcourt trio of Shackelford, Jahvon Quinerly and J.D. Davison leads the way on both ends of the floor.
The first half was tight for the first 10 minutes, but by the 3-minute mark, the Tigers had stretched the lead to 47-28. They would lead 51-37 at the break, but Shackelford led all players with 16 points after connecting on 3 of 5 shots from deep. Noah Gurley provided 7 early points off the bench.
Smith led Auburn with 11 points and Green had a very productive start with 10 points, 6 assists and 3 rebounds in the first half.
Quinerly started the second half on a tear and brought the Tide back to within two points at 57-55, but Johnson and Green had had enough of that. They would stretch the lead to 81-61 at the 7:07 mark, and never looked back from there. For a brief moment, there appeared to be life for Alabama, but Johnson connected on a triple to end that.
Auburn would put up triple-digit points for the second time this year, the last being in its only defeat in a double-overtime loss to Connecticut.
Quinerly posted 20 points, 4 rebounds, and 4 assists. Keon Ellis provided 9 points, 8 points, 2 assists, 2 blocks and a steal. Smith ended with 17 points and Kessler posted 14 points, 12 rebounds, 8 blocks, 4 steals and an assist.
Alabama hosts No. 5 Kentucky on Saturday.
Auburn visits Georgia on Saturday afternoon.
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