Nashville, TN (EETV)- After three years without a win, Auburn opened the 2019 SEC Tournament with a 81-71 victory over the Missouri Tigers.
Auburn was held in check from behind the arc as they went 12-34 in the game. Auburn's Bryce Brown and Jared Harper did not score a single point in the first half for the first time this season.
The Tigers turned to the trio of Chuma Okeke, Horace Spencer, and Anfernee McLemore who led the team with six points.
Auburn's defense stepped up as they forced 10 turnovers. Horace Spencer had a big half on the boards with four blocks in the first half. Missouri made a push late in the half but Auburn would hold a 32-30 lead at halftime.
After going scoreless in the first half, Bryce Brown knocked down three straight three point shots to give Auburn a ten point lead early in the second half.
Missouri did not go away as Geist continued his solid play leading the Tigers within three points from the lead. Auburn went on 9-0 run capped off by another three from Brown to make it 61-52.
Both teams traded baskets with two minutes to play until Jared Harper made his first contribution with a corner three to put Auburn up by 7. Auburn would hold on to win by a final score of 81-71.
Leading scorers for Auburn were Bryce Brown with 17 points and Chuma Okeke who added 12. Missouri's Jordan Geist led all scorers with 25 points and Torrence Watson had 20.
Auburn moves on to the quarterfinals of the SEC Tournament and will face South Carolina at 3 PM ET on the ESPN.