Foul trouble dooms Cats in loss to Auburn, 75-66

Samir Doughty scored 23 points while making 14 of 15 free throws and No. 17 Auburn finished strong in a 75-66 win over 13th-ranked Kentucky on Saturday in an NCAA Tournament rematch.

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AUBURN, Ala. (UK Athletics)- Samir Doughty scored 23 points while making 14 of 15 free throws and No. 17 Auburn finished strong in a 75-66 win over 13th-ranked Kentucky on Saturday in an NCAA Tournament rematch.

Isaac Okoro made a key 3-pointer and scored 14 points for the Tigers (19-2, 6-2 Southeastern Conference), who dominated the final four minutes.

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It wasn’t nearly as big as their 77-71 overtime victory over the Wildcats (16-5, 6-2) that vaulted Auburn to its first Final Four last season, but it moved the Tigers into a tie for second place in the SEC.

The Tigers hadn’t played a ranked team all season but face league leader No. 22 LSU next Saturday.

Immanuel Quickley led Kentucky with 23 points before fouling out in the final minute, taking away the Wildcats’ top 3-point shooter with point guard Ashton Hagans already on the bench with five fouls. Tyrese Maxey added 22 points while stars Hagans and Nick Richards struggled.

Hagans fouled out on a steal attempt with 3:36 left and Auburn leading 62-60. He had five points – his second lowest total of the season – and three assists while committing six turnovers.

Richards had seven points, half his season average, and seven rebounds.

Auburn outscored foul-plagued Kentucky 16-6 down the stretch after trailing much of the way. Danjel Purifoy started that hot streak with a 3-pointer and Okoro buried another for a 68-62 lead with 2:36 left.

Kentucky didn’t make a field goal over the final 2:15.

Auburn capped a drama-filled week after rallying from 19 points down in the second half for an 83-82 overtime win over Mississippi.

BIG PICTURE

Kentucky: Fell to 3-2 against ranked teams and forced only seven turnovers.

Auburn: Has won 15 straight home games. The Tigers overcame a poor shooting night after hitting 18 of 51 shots (35.3%).

ESPN GAMEDAY

The disparity in the programs’ history was amplified by ESPN College GameDay’s airing from Auburn for the first time. It was Kentucky’s 19th appearance on the show, second most among programs.

DOUGHTY’S START

Doughty scored 10 points during Auburn’s early 12-1 run, making all seven free throw attempts and a 3-pointer.

UP NEXT

Kentucky hosts Mississippi State on Tuesday night.

Auburn visits Arkansas on Tuesday night.

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Austin Miller joins ABC 36 Sports Team as a Sports Reporter and Weekend Anchor. Austin is from the Louisville area and graduated from St. Xavier High School in 2008. Austin graduated from Indiana University with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and a second concentration in German. While at IU, Austin was a blogger at Kentsterling.com and co-host, producer and engineer for WIUX, the school’s student radio station. Before coming to ABC 36, Austin was a news videographer at WLFI in West Lafayette from 2012-2015. While working with WLFI, Austin had the chance to cover the Purdue Boilermakers. He then accepted a Sports/New Reporter position at Local 4 KSNB-TV in Hastings Nebraska and was eventually promoted to sports full-time as the Weekend Sports Anchor/Reporter. While at KSNB-TV, Austin covered the University of Nebraska, the University of Nebraska-Kearney and Hastings College. After spending nearly six years away from home, Austin is excited to return to the Bluegrass State to cover the teams he grew up watching. In his spare time, Austin enjoys playing basketball, working out and cooking. If you have any story ideas or would like to say “Hello,” you can reach Austin by email at amiller@wtvq.com or direct message him on Twitter @AustinMillerTV.