GAMEDAY Mens Basketball

Auburn 89, Syracuse 68

By DOUG FEINBERG
AP Basketball Writer

PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas - Bruce Pearl learned a lot about his Auburn team during a grueling three-day tournament in The Bahamas.

The 19th-ranked Tigers finished in fifth place at the Battle 4 Atlantis after beating Syracuse 89-68.

"We got a lot better," Pearl said. "You just saw us play half our season so far. So zone against Syracuse, difficult Loyola offense and athletes and physicality of UConn. We saw a lot. Can we build on it now? That's the question. We got a lot better this week."

Jabari Smith scored 22 points and K.D. Johnson added 15 points and five steals for the Tigers (5-1). Auburn's only loss of the tournament came in double overtime to UConn.

"We feel like we should have won three games. We came here to win two and we did that," Smith said.

Auburn led by 10 at the half and increased the lead to 19 on a dunk by Johnson with 15:05 left. Syracuse used a 7-0 run to get within 64-54 with 8:10 remaining, but Smith ended the spurt with a 3-pointer from the wing and the Orange (3-3) got no closer than 11 the rest of the way.

Buddy Boeheim, Cole Swider and Jesse Edwards each scored 17 points for Syracuse.

"This was a tough tournament. The toughest tournament I played in since I've been coaching, top to bottom," Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim said. "Our team isn't quite ready for this. I think we can get there, but we're not ready for it right now."

Jimmy Boeheim, the younger of Jim Boeheim's two sons on the team who came into the game averaging 14.2 points, finished with three. His only basket came on a 3-pointer with 13:44 left in the second half.

Auburn trailed 25-24 with 7:20 left in the first half before scoring the next 11 points to go up 35-25. The Tigers held the Orange to one basket over the final 7:20 to go into the half up 43-33.


Auburn
Player Pos Min FG-FGA FT-FTA 3P-3PA OR-TR Ast Blk Stl TO PF Pts
J. Smith F 30 8-17 2-2 4-8 0-6 4 1 0 1 1 22
W. Kessler F 15 3-3 0-0 0-0 1-3 0 1 0 1 4 6
K. Johnson G 28 6-14 2-2 1-5 0-3 1 0 5 2 1 15
D. Cambridge G 24 4-8 0-0 2-5 2-5 2 1 2 2 2 10
Z. Jasper G 23 1-3 0-0 1-2 0-0 5 0 0 0 4 3
W. Green Jr.   20 2-6 0-0 1-5 1-3 7 0 1 1 0 5
D. Cardwell   17 3-3 0-0 0-0 3-6 0 1 0 0 3 6
J. Williams   17 3-7 3-5 0-1 3-7 2 1 1 0 1 9
C. Moore   15 1-2 2-4 0-1 1-2 2 0 2 0 1 4
L. Berman   8 2-3 0-0 2-2 0-0 0 0 0 0 2 6
P. Cook   1 1-1 0-0 1-1 0-1 0 0 0 0 1 3
C. Leopard   1 0-0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Totals   199 34-67
(.507)
9-13
(.692)
12-30
(.400)
11-38 23 5 11 7 20 89


Syracuse
Player Pos Min FG-FGA FT-FTA 3P-3PA OR-TR Ast Blk Stl TO PF Pts
C. Swider F 32 5-11 5-5 2-6 0-4 0 0 0 1 2 17
J. Boeheim F 24 1-5 0-0 1-1 0-1 1 0 0 0 1 3
J. Edwards C 31 7-8 3-5 0-0 2-6 1 1 0 0 3 17
B. Boeheim G 32 3-12 9-9 2-6 1-3 2 0 2 3 1 17
J. Girard III G 26 1-6 0-0 1-5 0-3 3 0 0 2 0 3
S. Torrence   21 2-2 1-3 1-1 0-4 5 0 0 5 1 6
B. Williams   21 1-3 0-0 0-0 0-0 1 0 3 2 2 2
F. Anselem   9 0-1 2-2 0-0 1-2 0 0 0 0 0 2
J. Ajak   3 0-0 1-2 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 1
Totals   199 20-48
(.417)
21-26
(.808)
7-19
(.368)
5-28 13 1 5 15 10 68
Officials: Gary Maxwell, Raymond Styons, Owen Shortt




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