Auburn, Ala (EETV)-
The Defense shined in Auburn's 24-6 victory against Tulane Saturday not allowing a touchdown in the first game at Jordan-Hare of 2019.
The defensive stat of the game was Auburn's ability to hold Tulane to 2-15 on third down. Head Coach Gus Malzahn said, "Defensively, we did a super job against an offense that's been averaging a lot of points and a lot of yards rushing. They were 2-15 on third down. It was just great third down plan and execution."
Jeremiah Dinson, the reigning SEC Defensive Player of the Week, had an interception that turned into points on the offensive end for the Tigers as after the interception at the Auburn 18-yard line, Auburn marched 82 yards on 11 plays with JaTarvious Whitlow capping off the drive with a 14-yard rushing touchdown to give Auburn a 21-6 lead at the end of the third quarter.
Dinson said, "The defensive line got a good push. The quarterback tried to hit the tight end and the ball was in the air for a long time. I was the middle field safety, just ran it down and made a play."
Offensively Whitlow lead the way with 23 carries for 96 yards while Bo Nix was 19/37 on pass attempts for 207 yards and a touchdown.
The Tigers gained 152 rushing yards in the second half, out-gaining Tulane 379-223 for the game and finishing with 172 rushing yards.
Will Hastings proved once again that he is a vital part of the Auburn offense after hauling in five passes for 75 yards and a touchdown in the first half where he sliced through the Tulane secondary and spun into the end zone for Bo Nix's first touchdown pass in front of the Jordan Hare crowd.
Hastings, who has been rehabbing for the past 18 months after two knee surgeries, said of the second quarter touchdown, "It felt really, really good. It was awesome getting in the end zone and celebrating with my teammates."
Eli Stove, another receiver who had been dealing with knee injuries, capped off the next second quarter drive with a four-yard touchdown run to give the Tigers a 14-6 lead at the half.
Malzahn said of the win, "I think its a quality win and we took care of business, they played extremely hard and that was a quality opponent. We're 2-0 and looking forward to playing at home next week."
The Tigers welcome Kent State into Jordan Hare on Saturday for homecoming at 6 p.m. CT and can be seen on ESPN2.