December 30, 2018 / 12:29 AM / 2 months ago

No. 12 Auburn cruises over North Florida

The No. 12 Auburn Tigers had no problem in its final tuneup Saturday before starting play in the Southeastern Conference with a 95-49 rout of visiting North Florida.

Bryce Brown led the Tigers (11-2) with 18 points and helped the club win its 34th nonconference game over the last three seasons, tying the school record. It marks the eighth time the Tigers have won at least 11 nonconference games and the first time it has happened in three straight seasons.

Brown, a 6-foot-3 senior guard, was 5-for-12 from the field and 5-for-10 on 3-pointers. It is the seventh time he has had at least four 3-pointers in a game this season.

The Tigers also got nine points and 10 rebounds from Jared Harper, who became the 38th Auburn player to score 1,000 career points, and 13 points and seven rebounds from Austin Wiley. Chuma Okeke scored 12 with five steals, and Malik Dunbar and Anfernee McLemore each scored 11.

The Osprey (5-9) were led by Noah Horchler with 10 points and seven rebounds and Ezekiel Balogun with 10 points, matching his season high.

North Florida extended its streak of consecutive games with a 3-point basket to 674, the nation’s 26th longest streak.

North Florida hung with Auburn early in the game and enjoyed a brief 9-8 lead just under eight minutes into the contest. But the Tigers went on to force 21 first-half turnovers and outscored the Osprey 37-14 to grab a 45-23 advantage at halftime. Auburn had 17 points off the fast break in the opening half.

North Florida lost to a ranked opponent for the second straight game, having lost to No. 11 Florida State on Dec. 19. North Florida is 0-22 against ranked opponents and 2-55 against Power Five conferences under coach Matthew Driscoll. Auburn improved its all-time record to 3-0 against North Florida.

North Florida plays again on Jan. 2 when it hosts North Alabama in the A-Sun Conference opener. Auburn is off until it travels to Ole Miss on Jan. 9 for the SEC opener.

—Field Level Media

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