AUBURN, Ala. – With freshman phenom Jabari Smith filling the box score, No. 22 Auburn turned up the intensity in the second half, defeating ULM 93-65 Friday at Auburn Arena.
In his second Auburn game, Smith scored 23 points, grabbed 10 rebounds, made four steals, blocked two shots and had two assists.
Smith rebounded a shot blocked by Walker Kessler and drove the length of the floor for a layup, dribbling behind his back at halfcourt to the delight of the sold-out crowd.
Auburn outscored the Warhawks 56-26 in the second half after trailing 39-37 at intermission.
Devan Cambridge’s offensive rebound and dunk tied the score at 41-41 after Auburn had trailed by four early in the second half.
After Auburn forced a turnover on a shot clock violation, Green passed to Johnson for a 3-pointer that capped a 7-0 run and gave Auburn a 44-41 lead.
Auburn extended its lead to 10 points thanks to Johnson’s stepback 3-pointer sandwiched between a pair of old-fashioned 3-point plays by Moore, who scored all but two of his points in the second half.
Trailing by eight late in the first half after a 10-0 ULM run, Smith hit a pair of free throws and a pair of 3-pointers to pull Auburn within two points at the half. Smith led the Tigers with 11 points and six rebounds in the first half.
Auburn used an early 9-0 run to take a 13-5 lead before the Warhawks outscored the Tigers 21-5 over the next eight and a half minutes to lead 26-18.
The Tigers (2-0) are off until next Friday, Nov. 19, when they travel to Tampa to play South Florida at 6 p.m. CT.
Jeff Shearer is a Senior Writer at AuburnTigers.com. Follow him on Twitter: @jeff_shearer