AUBURN, ALA. (EETV) -- Auburn continues to play well at home this season, taking down Mississippi State 69-61 on 90’s Night in Neville Arena.
90’s themed bucket hats were handed to students as they ran to the Jungle. The hats were gone within six minutes of the doors opening, and the student section was filled to capacity in just 12 minutes.
On the court, the Tigers were led by Jaylin Williams, who played one of the best games of his Auburn career, scoring 21 points and shooting 5-7 from behind the arc. Williams had an increased role in Saturday’s contest due to Chris Moore’s shoulder injury.
“If you want to give anybody credit for winning this game then I’d give it to Jaylin Williams,” coach Bruce Pearl said.
Williams scored 13 of Auburn’s first 15 points, helping the Tigers jump out to an early seven-point lead. Auburn extended the lead to 10 and seemed in control of the game.
Mississippi State continued to battle hard despite Williams' productivity early. The Bulldogs were able to get within three points of the Tigers thanks to Auburn’s poor rebounding on the night and turnovers. The Tigers turned the ball over 20 times and got outrebounded by the more physical Mississippi State team.
Allen Flanigan drilled a three-pointer at the buzzer, sending the Jungle into a frenzy as the Tigers went to the locker room at the half up 30-22.
Coming out of the break, Auburn got out to an 11-point lead with more help from Williams. The Bulldogs, however, grabbed rebound after rebound and converted from the free-throw line, keeping them in the game.
Mississippi State shot just 37.5% from the field and went 0-18 from three-point range. Their poor shooting is what allowed Auburn to maintain a lead since the opening minutes of the contest.
The Bulldogs cut the deficit to four points with just over two minutes to play, but Wendell Green was not about to let the Tigers' lead slip away. Green nailed a three-pointer, assisted by Allen Flanigan, then scored an athletic layup on the ensuing possession.
Green scored 11 of Auburn’s last 12 points, capping off Auburn’s 28th straight home win.
Auburn will go on a road trip next week with back-to-back away games. Wednesday at 7 pm, the Tigers will take on LSU, and Saturday at 3:30 pm, they will be in Columbia, SC to take on the USC Gamecocks.