Defensive end Corey Lemonier and tackle Kenneth Carter put the Tigers on the board with four seconds left in the first quarter to cut an early Alabama lead to 14-7. The pair of sophomores rushed Tide quarterback A.J. McCarron on a play that started at Alabama's 10-yard line.
"The tackle gave me a really hard set," Lemonier said in describing the play. "I just went under and tried to make a play. I got him from the back side and the ball came loose."
That's when the scramble began. End Nosa Equae missed his attempt to grab the ball in the end zone.
"When Corey hit him (McCarron) from the back, I saw Nosa miss the ball and knew I had to get the ball," Carter said. "It felt good, but I wish the game had ended the other way around. It's pretty hard to lose. I'm an in-state player and the last team I want to lose to is Alabama. I hate that.
The play gave Lemonier 9 1/2 sacks for the season, moving him into 10th place on the Auburn single season Auburn list for sacks ahead of Donnie Humphrey.
"Hat's off to Alabama," Lemonier said. "They got after it today, but so did we. A bowl will help get our minds off this a little bit, but you really can't put a loss to Alabama behind you. It's 364 days until next year when we play again. That's the only day to get the taste out of our mouths."
In other news and notes from Saturday:
*Auburn had two changes to its starting lineup from a week earlier against Samford--both on the defensive side of the ball. True freshman Jermaine Whitehead opened at left corner ahead of redshirt freshman Jonathan Mincy, who started in the place of T'Sharvan Bell, who suffered a season-ending knee injury against Georgia. Carter moved back to a starting tackle slot ahead of true freshman Gabe Wright, who started the previous three games. Carter started the first eight games.
*With Whitehead starting against Alabama, he became the sixth true freshman to start for the Tigers this year. Others are linebacker Justin Garrett, defensive lineman Gabe Wright, center Reese Dismukes, wide receiver Quan Bray and tight end Brandon Fulse.
*Alabama leads the overall series with Auburn 41-34-1 after Saturday's win at Jordan-Hare Stadium. The Tigers still hold a 8-4 edge in games played since 2000 and a 11-10 advantage in the past 21 meetings.
*Saturday's loss ended a 14-game win streak for the Tigers at Jordan-Hare Stadium. Auburn hadn't lost at home since its 26-21 setback to Alabama in 2009 when the Crimson Tide came back on its final drive and eventually went on to win the national championship.
*Auburn leads Alabama 7-4 in games played at Auburn going back to the Crimson Tide's first visit in 1989. The Tigers have lost only once in Tuscaloosa in eight games there with a 5-1 record since 2000 and a pair of shutout victories in 1895 and 1901, the only two games played in Tuscaloosa prior to 2000.