Tigers Fall In Double OT, Upsetting Barbee

Coach Tony Barbee

Auburn dropped a 78-72 basketball decision to Rhode Island in double overtime.

Auburn, Ala.--Rhode Island hit a long-range, three-point buzzer-beater to set up a second overtime and then took care of business after that to earn its first victory of the season at the expense of Coach Tony Barbee's Auburn basketball team.

Barbee didn't have anything good to say about his team's performance following the 78-72 setback that saw the Tigers fall to 2-4 on the season. Rhode Island is 1-5.

"We had 19 turnovers to a team that pressed us maybe once or twice--19 turnovers," Barbee said again for emphasis. "Those 19 turnovers turned into 30 points for them. A team that struggles rebounding the ball out-rebounds (39-37) us and 13 other points come on second chance points.

"We have got a long way to go," Barbee said. "We have a week to prepare for DePaul. Obviously the focus is going to be on us because we have some major issues.

"We can't take care of the ball," Barbee said. "We are sloppy with the ball, we can't get into our offense, we are not efficient offensively. We don't know what we are looking for.

"Defensively, we are just five separate guys out there trying to guard," he added. "We are not guarding as one. We had more breakdowns on the defensive end of the floor."

One of those breakdowns came at the end of the first overtime. After Noel Johnson hit the first end of a one-and-one at the foul line the Tigers were up 66-63 with 10.3 seconds left.

Barbee said he instructed his players to foul the Rams before they could get off a three-point shot. However, that didn't happen and Xavier Munford threw in an off-balance jumper from near the time line to send the game into a second overtime.

Munford led Rhode Island with 33 points as he hit 8-15 threes. Nikola Malesevic added 19 points and former Auburn guard Andre Malone added 13 points.

Freshman Jordan Price came off the bench to lead the Tigers with 19 points. The guard hit 7-11 field goals with two assists and one rebound in 19 minutes of playing time.

Johnson scored 13 points for the Tigers while Rob Chubb led Auburn on the boards with nine rebounds, but had just six points.

Auburn led 37-32 at halftime as the Tigers hit 14-22 field goals. The shooting cooled after that as they finished at 45.2 percent for the game. The Tigers were 11-27 on threes and 5-7 at the foul line.

Rhode Island hit 40 percent of its shots, including 13-26 threes. The Rams were 13-21 at the foul line.

With the scored tied at 58-58 with under a minute left each team got a chance to score. Auburn's ended when Allen Payne was called for a charge while making a move on the baseline.

Rhode Island held for a late shot, but lost the ball. Josh Wallace's desperation shot from near halfcourt was off target sending the game into the first five-minute overtime.

Sullivan got the Tigers started in extra time with a steal and fastbreak layup. The Tigers led 65-61 with 44 seconds left, but could not close out the visitors.

Box Score

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