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Tigers fade in second half

TUSCALOOSA – This time, Alabama controlled the second half. This time, Auburn didn’t make enough shots or get enough rebounds. And Alabama earned some revenge Tuesday with a 61-43 victory over Auburn at Coleman Coliseum.

Auburn coach Tony Barbee said he was proud of how his team fought against Alabama

Alabama pulled away from a 15-13 lead to establish 23-16 halftime lead, then took control early in the second half and never relinquished it.

On Feb. 6, Auburn rallied from a 23-13 halftime deficit to beat Alabama 49-37. It is Auburn’s only victory in its last 13 games.

“We had to win the rebounding battle,” Auburn coach Tony Barbee said. “We lost it by 10. It had to be 15-20 layups we missed. Of our 15 3’s, 12-13-14 of them were wide-open, nobody near us. We had to limit our turnovers to less than 10 and we had 15.”

Rob Chubb scored 13 points to lead Auburn, but he couldn’t carry the load alone in the second half, when Alabama’s Trevor Releford heated up to finish with 21 points. Nick Jacobs added 10 points and 10 rebounds.

“Rob is fighting,” Barbee said. “I thought he played physical and played tough. You almost need helmets when you play this Alabama team. It is unfortunate the game is allowed to be played this way, but you know it coming in. I thought Rob matched their physicality. I’m proud of the way the kids fought. We’re just not playing really well right now.”

Auburn held Alabama scoreless for 7:29 before Releford’s 3-pointer with 2:37 left in the first half. The Tide scored six straight points and led 23-16 at the half as Chubb scored nine points on 4-of-6 field goals while the rest of the Tigers combined for seven points on 2-of-22 shots from the floor.

Auburn fell to 9-19 overall and 3-12 in the SEC. Alabama improved to 19-9 and 11-4.

Alabama outshot Auburn 39.3 percent to 30.0 percent from the floor. The Crimson Tide was 5-of-24 (.208) from 3-point range while the Tigers were 2-of-15 (.133). Alabama outrebounded Auburn 41-31.

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