The first half was a nightmare for the Commodores. Sloppy play combined with red-hot Tiger shooting and slashing to the basket enabled Auburn to build a big lead. The Tigers led from the start. After Vanderbilt pulled to within one on a Lance Goulbourne 3-point shot, the Tigers built their lead to 10 after a Brendon Knox dunk. Vandy battled back to narrow the Auburn lead to 20-17 on a Brad Tinsley bucket, but the Tigers went on a 21-8 run to build a 41-25 lead with three minutes to go in the half. The Commodores outscored Auburn, 5-2, in the final minutes of the half to head to the break trailing, 43-32.
In the second half, after an early Vandy turnover that resulted in a Tiger dunk, the Commodores got to work chipping away the Auburn lead. A 3-point play by Jeffery Taylor cut the lead to 10 at 45-35 less than a minute into the half. A short time later a Tinsley layup made cut the Tiger lead down to single digits.
Jermaine Beal's layup pulled Vanderbilt to within four at 47-43 with 16:33 left in the game. It would be another Beal layup that pulled Vandy to within one (53-52) with 12 minutes to go. Beal would go on to finish with 14. After quick Auburn mini rally to pull back ahead by five, Vanderbilt scored six points in a row and took the lead for the first time in the game at 55-53 on a John Jenkins 3-pointer with 11:39 to go. Vanderbilt then built their lead to 11 with 4:32 to go on a Tinsley layup. The Commodores would go on to lead by as many as 12 but Auburn would never be able to pull to score to closer than eight points.
In addition to Beal's 14 points, Vanderbilt got healthy production from several players including Taylor led the team in scoring with 18. Ogilvy added 17 and Tinsley 15. Although Vanderbilt was out-rebounded, 33-28, the Commodores outscored the Tigers, 44-34, in the paint.
Auburn was led in scoring by Lucas Hargrove with 19. DeWayne Reed added 16.
After the game Ogilvy discussed Vanderbilt's slow start and the improved second half play, "We were flat to start the first half. Can't put a finger on it, but we played better on the defensive end and got a spark from that. We got a couple scores and that helped get us going."
Vanderbilt improves to 15-3 (4-0 SEC) and will travel to Tennessee on Wednesday. The Commodores are off to their best SEC start since 1965-66. Auburn falls to 10-10 (1-4 SEC) and hosts Ole Miss on Thursday. Vanderbilt now leads the all-time series with Auburn, 80-51.
Vanderbilt awakens, downs Auburn, 82-74
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