Hoosier Men’s Hoops: Auburn Embarrasses Indiana in Atlanta

Bruce Pearl, Auburn University Men's Basketball (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Bruce Pearl, Auburn University Men's Basketball (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

The Indiana Hoosiers had a lot of momentum on their side heading into their matchup with the Auburn Tigers yesterday.

So much for all of that.

The Hoosiers started strongly, pulling out to a 10-22 lead with just over 12 and a half minutes to go in the first half. The Tigers flipped a switch from that point on, as they cruised into the end of the first stanza with a 52-34 lead on the scoreboard. Bruce Pearl and his squad never looked back, going on to crush Mike Woodson’s team by a final of 104-76.

Auburn was led by senior Jaylin Williams, who tied a career-high with 24 points on the evening. The versatile forward also registered 7 assists and 6 boards in what was realistically the best game of his collegiate career to this point. Williams was flanked by talented freshman Aden Holloway, who matched his comrade’s career night with a personal best 24 points along with an additional personal high 5 treys. The two led the charge offensively while the rest of the roster provided a ton of energy, most notably senior K.D Johnson who was a handful for the Hoosiers on both sides of the ball.

Malik Reneau led Indiana with 15 points, the second straight game in which that statement has rung true. Kel’el Ware and Mackenzie Mgbako started off strong, hitting a few big jumpers apiece early on. Unfortunately, the two cooled off considerably and combined for just 23 points on 4-16 shooting. The rest of the team was okay, with Gabe Cupps standing out once again. He was finally able to see some shots go down, finishing with 11 points on 4-6 shooting from the field and 2-3 from outside. The freshman showcased his usual grittiness on defense, while also snagging a career high 5 rebounds. His performance in the lopsided loss was a silver lining.

The loss snapped a 4 game winning streak for Indiana, who dropped to 7-2 on the year. The Hoosiers will return to Bloomington and immediately begin preparations for the 2nd ranked Kansas Jayhawks. The blue blood programs will face off in Assembly Hall at 12:30 PM this coming Saturday, December 16th. The Hoosiers will look to exact revenge after the Jayhawks clobbered them a season ago.