No. 10 Auburn can't overcome slow start at SC


Per Josh Vitale of the Opelika-Auburn News, McLemore was injured when he got tangled with teammate Desean Murray.

Frank Booker paced SC offensively with 19 points, making some big plays in the second half to stunt Auburn's rally, and Wesley Myers added 13 before fouling out late. SC had a 46-25 lead at halftime.

The Tigers trailed by as many as 26 points in the first half and then lost Anfernee McLemore, the SEC's blocked shot leader, to a season-ending injury.

No. 10 Auburn played an inspired second half on the road at SC, cutting a 26-point lead all the way down to five at one point, but it wasn't enough as the Tigers simply ran out of gas and bodies in an 84-75 loss. Auburn falls to 23-4 and 11-3 in league play.

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"I was very proud of the way the kids battled back", Auburn coach Bruce Pearl said after the game. Chris Silva scored 10 of his 14 points in the first half, and he also grabbed 10 rebounds to lead the Gamecock effort on the boards. An Auburn spokesperson confirmed the injury is a dislocation of McLemore's left ankle and he was taken to a nearby hospital in Columbia for further medical care.

Gamecocks coach Frank Martin announced Holden's decision on Saturday, a short time before SC took on No. 10 Auburn at home.

The Tigers lost to SC today, and were without McElmore for much of the contest. The sophomore point guard fouled out 23 seconds left after committing a season-high nine turnovers to just one assist.

Next up for Auburn is a home matchup against Alabama Wednesday night.