Free-throw failure prevents comeback bid over Ole Miss

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Auburn women's basketball  came close in their comeback against Ole Miss, but fell short 63-59 Thursday night. It was the first loss of the season when the Tigers led in rebounding.

Trailing by as much as nine in the fourth quarter, the Tigers cut it to just two in the final minute. Missing six free throws in the quarter and nine in total for the game, Auburn could not complete the comeback. Auburn shot 34 percent from the field and 36 percent (5-14) from the free-throw line.

“That’s absolutely unbelievable,” head coach Terri Williams-Flournoy said of the free-throw shooting. “We fix one problem, rebounding, and then we can’t shoot free throws.”

“We’re such a better free throw shooting team than that. We forced 20 turnovers, got 22 points off those turnovers, we outrebounded them 42-to-38, we got 19 offensive rebounds, we do everything that we need to do. We missed a lot of shots. We’re just not going to win with just one person making shots.”

The Tigers were tied at halftime, 26-26, for the first time this season despite trailing for most of the first half. Down eight with 6:22 remaining in the half, Auburn would go on a 9-0 run to have its first lead of the night since the opening minute.

Ole Miss would build their lead with 26 points from Shandricka Sessom. Sessom hit six 3-pointers on the night while Alissa Alston finished the night by hitting eight free throws in the final minutes of the second half.

Brandy Montgomery scored 11 points in the fourth quarter as Auburn’s only player to reach double figures. Tiffany Lewis made her debut with nine points, one rebound and two steals. Katie Frerking and Jessica Jones, who finished with a game-high 10 rebounds, would join Lewis scoring nine apiece.

Auburn will host their final two home games at Auburn Arena starting Monday night as Auburn hosts Alabama. Tip-off is set for 6 p.m. CST, and can be seen on the SEC Network.

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