Auburn, AL – The No. 12-ranked Auburn Tigers remain undefeated with a 79-73 win over North Carolina State, their toughest opponent to date this season. There were fifty total fouls called in this contest, and a total of fifty-six fouls shots taken. Both teams shot under 65 percent from the charity stripe. Auburn’s guard play caused foul trouble for the NC State backcourt early in the second half.
Auburn senior guard Samir Doughty (6-4) led all scorers with 24 points. His step back three following a cut on a sideline out of bounds play ultimately sealed the victory for the Tigers. His defense on the Wolfpack guards was excellent, denying penetration to all three primary ball handlers at times during the contest. Doughty had struggled in the previous two contests offensively, but found success at every level, shooting 6-of-12 from the field, 3-for-5 from three-point range as well as 9-of-12 from the free throw line. He added four assists and four steals, but did struggle with five turnovers, primarily when trying to force the ball into the post.
Senior point guard J’Von McCormick (6-0) added 14 points for Auburn, getting to the rim multiple times through contact, as well as scoring on several impressive floaters. Senior center Austin Wiley (6-11) added 10 points and eight rebounds on a perfect 4-of-4 night from the field. He also made both of his free throw attempts.
North Carolina State was led by wing CJ Brice (6-5), with 21 points and 11 rebounds. He added four steals and shot 3-of-4 from three-point range, as well as 4-for-4 from the free throw line. He fouled out with 1:38 remaining. Point Guard Markell Johnson (6-1) added 17 points and 10 assists. He found seams in the Auburn defense and got to the rim often. He found teammates in transition and in early offense leading to several easy shots at the rim. Johnson struggled from the free throw line, making only 4-of-10 attempts.
Auburn (10-0) remains home to face Lehigh on Saturday. NC State (8-3) will travel home to take on The Citadel on Sunday.
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