Forward Danjel Purifoy shook a recent scoring slump with a season-high 17 points, and senior center Austin Wiley posted his eighth career double-double to lead No. 8 Auburn to an 86-59 victory over Lipscomb on Sunday in Auburn, Ala.
With LSU handing Liberty its first loss earlier in the day, the Tigers (12-0) are one of two undefeated teams in the country. San Diego State is 13-0 after its win over Cal Poly on Saturday. The Tigers are off to their best start since the 1998-99 team won its first 17 games.
Purifoy hadn’t been in double figures since scoring 13 points in a win over Richmond on Nov. 26, going 6 of 24 from the field since then. On Sunday, he was 5 of 9 from the field, hitting on 3 of 5 on 3-pointers. He also had nine rebounds. Wiley blocked three shots to go with his 10 points and 11 rebounds.
Guard Jamal Johnson matched his season high with 14 points, and freshman forward Isaac Okoro had 14 points and a season-high three blocks.
Freshman guard KJ Johnson led Lipscomb (5-8) with 17 points.
The Bisons managed to trim a 15-point halftime deficit to 12 points at 53-41 just over six minutes into the second half, but that was a close as they could get.
Auburn led by as many as 30 points, 86-56, in the final minute of the game.
The Bisons came out firing, going 4 of 5 from the field to take a 10-2 lead less than three minutes into the game.
But the Tigers got it going and caught up at 12-12 on guard J’Von McCormick’s back-to-back 3-pointers. They got their first lead at 15-14 on Johnson’s 3-pointer and worked their way to a double-digit cushion at 29-18. They led by 18 points three times in the half before settling for a 40-25 advantage the break.
—Field Level Media