AUBURN, Ala. (EETV)- Bruce Pearl and the boys traded in sun and sand for the hardwood tonight, defeating Bradley 85-64 in the semi-finals of the Cancun Challenge. Auburn has secured their spot the championship game tomorrow.
The Tigers are typically reliant on their defensive efforts, but tonight the offense found its' rhythm to hold a lead the entire night and end the game ahead of the Braves by 21 points. The team earned it's season high in percentage from the field, shooting 56.4 percent and 47.1 from 3-point range.
Although the lead scorer in the matchup was Bradley's, Connor Hickman, with 15 points, five Tigers ended the contest with double-digit points, including Johni Broome (14), Wendell Green Jr. (14), K.D. Johnson (13), Allen Flaingan (12) and Jaylin Williams (11).
Broome, who missed Friday's game due to a slight knee injury, made his presence known early and often, scoring in the opening possession and contributing four of the first seven points. With 14 points and nine rebounds, the Morehead State transfer was just short of a double-double.
Green had himself a night as well, bouncing back from a disappointing showing against Texas Southern. Despite four turnovers tonight, the returning guard finished with 14 points on 5-of-10 shooting, and was good for 2-of-4 of his 3-point attempts. He added a season-high six assists, pulled down three rebounds and had three steals.
This was the second game in the Cancun Challenge for both teams, as Bradley beat Eastern Michigan last Tuesday and Auburn took down Texas Southern this past Friday. Bradley will play in the consolation game against the loser of tonight's Liberty versus Northwestern game at 5:30 tomorrow night, and the No. 13 Tigers will face the winner of that matchup in the championship game at 7:30.