Thanks to the 3-point and free-throw lines, Auburn earned a hard-fought win on senior night.
In its 58-54 win over Missouri on Sunday, Daisa Alexander led the team in scoring for the fourth-straight game while tied for a game-high output of 19 points. After entering the fourth quarter down seven, Auburn would go 2-for-3 from three and 8-for-14 from the free-throw line to push toward a final lead.
Erin Howard added a career-high 12 points as Unique Thompson, who finished with a team-high eight rebounds, joined Janiah McKay with nine points apiece.
Alexander rode the cheer of the crowd and scored nine points as Auburn outscored Missouri 20-9 in the final quarter.
“My teammates give me all the confidence,” Alexander said. “If I make it, they tell me to shoot it and if I miss it, they tell me to shoot it. That’s what gives me all my confidence.”
In addition to Alexander’s play, Auburn scored 17 points off of 19 Missouri turnovers, including 14 points off of 12 turnovers in the first half.
“I’m so proud of them,” said Auburn head coach Terri-Williams-Flournoy. “As everybody knows we're not a man-to-man defensive team, but they really got down and played it today.”
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Following a 9-0 run by Missouri to end the fourth quarter, Auburn held the away Tigers scoreless for the first five minutes of the fourth while regaining a lead on an 11-0 run.
"I told them, ‘We've worked too hard this week in preparing for Missouri to go out and not give it all in the next 10 minutes,’” Williams-Flournoy said.
McKay would put the game away for Auburn, with five of her nine points coming from the free-throw line in the final stretch.
“Honestly, I was trying to stay composed,” said McKay. “It wasn’t the greatest shooting night for me, but I knew I had to keep my head up for my team. I tried to play as hard as I could on defense today and get my teammates the ball.”
With its three seniors, McKay, Erica Sanders and Emari Jones, Auburn earned its first 20-win regular season since 2009.
Now with No. 13 South Carolina and LSU left on the regular season, Williams-Flournoy’s squad looks ahead with tournament play around the corner.
After the win, Auburn moves to fifth in the SEC behind Texas A&M.
“At this point in the season, all wins are crucial,” Williams-Flournoy said. “The tournament is right around the corner and this was a huge win.”
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