AUBURN, Ala. (AP)Wendell Green Jr. scored 20 points and Allen Flanigan added 18 to help No. 15 Auburn overcome a cold offensive first half in a 67-59 wn over South Florida on Friday night.
Auburn trailed by as many as nine points early in the second half before storming back to take the lead on a 12-2 run that was keyed by back-to-back baskets from Flanigan.
All but two of Green’s points came after halftime. After shooting 25% from the field and 14% from behind the arc in the first half, Auburn hit 53.6% of its shots in the second half.
The comeback victory was the Tigers’ 40th consecutive home non-conference win inside Neville Arena. Auburn (2-0) is now 50-3 in such games under head coach Bruce Pearl.
South Florida (0-2) was led in scoring by Selton Miguel’s 13 points. Keyshawn Bryant and Jamir Chaplin both scored 10 points, while Sam Hines Jr. added nine points and 10 rebounds.
South Florida: Despite the loss, Friday was an inspired response from the Bulls, who lost to Southeast Missouri State at home on the opening night of the season. South Florida has consistently been a strong defensive team under head coach Brian Gregory, but improvement in scoring and rebounding against a ranked team will be encouraging.
Auburn: The Tigers’ defense has been strong to start the season, but their offense needs major improvement. Auburn has struggled to find a consistent offensive rhythm after the departure of national Freshman of the Year award winner and No. 3 overall NBA Draft pick Jabari Smith.
South Florida returns home to face Stetson on Monday night.
Auburn hosts Winthrop on Tuesday, the third of four consecutive home games to start the season.
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