Takeaways from Auburn basketball’s 80-71 win over Kentucky

·2 min read

Auburn strengthened its grip on first place in the SEC after an enormous victory on Saturday.

The Tigers downed the No. 12 Kentucky Wildcats 80-71 at home, improving to 18-1, 7-0 in SEC play. Texas A&M now stands in second, at 15-3, 4-1.

It was a game that Kentucky started out hot, turning Auburn over and converting the mistakes into points. As the game went on, Auburn asserted themselves on the defensive end, and injuries to Kentucky guards TyTy Washington and Sahvir Wheeler allowed the Tigers to crawl back into the game.

Here are the five takeaways from Auburn’s nine-point win over the Kentucky Wildcats.

Auburn turned the ball over too much early on

Auburn Tigers guard Wendell Green Jr. (1) drives the ball as Auburn Tigers men’s basketball takes on Kentucky Wildcats at Auburn Arena in Auburn, Ala., on Saturday, Jan. 22, 2022. Kentucky Wildcats lead Auburn Tigers 33-29 at halftime.

The Tigers only had 10 turnovers on the day, but Kentucky scored 22 points off of those turnovers.

Walker Kessler is incredible

AP Photo/Julie Bennett

Kessler finished with 19 points, 7 rebounds, and two blocks. Kentucky had a hard time committing to him on the pick and roll.

Both teams shot very well

Auburn Tigers guard K.D. Johnson (0) takes the court as Auburn Tigers men’s basketball takes on Kentucky Wildcats at Auburn Arena in Auburn, Ala., on Saturday, Jan. 22, 2022. Kentucky Wildcats lead Auburn Tigers 33-29 at halftime.

Both Auburn and Kentucky shot over 50% from the field, 37% from three, and 80% from the free throw line.

The half court game was interesting to watch

© Jake Crandall / USA TODAY NETWORK

Auburn’s offense was slowed way down by the Wildcats. The results were only 44 attempted field goals for a team that averages 64.2 shots per game.

Auburn played defense without folding

© Jake Crandall / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Tigers only had 12 fouls. Honestly, the officials called a really loose game on Auburn’s end for the majority of the contest.

Zep Jasper's work can't go unnoticed

John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

Jasper only finished with 2 points, 1 rebound, and 3 assists, but finished with a +17 plus/minus. Zep is the definition of glue guy.

1

1

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting