Sunday April 21st, 2024 11:13AM

Dogs fall to Auburn in regular season finale

By John Zenor AP Sports Writer

AUBURN, Ala. — Denver Jones scored a season-high 21 points, making 7 of 9 3-pointers, and No. 13 Auburn closed the regular season with a 92-78 victory over Georgia on Saturday night.

The Tigers (24-7, 13-5 Southeastern Conference) secured the No. 4 seed and a double bye in next week's SEC Tournament with their third straight victory.

They already had a double-digit lead over the Bulldogs (16-15, 6-12) much of the way. Then Jones hit three straight 3s in a two-minute span to help Auburn build a 60-39 cushion.

Georgia cut it to 12 points in the final 9 minutes but then Jones hit No. 7 and Jaylin Williams followed that with a 3-pointer of his own.

"Auburn is terrific, they executed at a really high level," Georgia coach Mike White said. "The hole that we dug ourselves early on in the game was the difference. I loved our fight in the second 20 [minutes]. To come in here and outrebound these guys shows you that our guys left a lot out there on the floor physically.”

The Tigers came into the game tied for second in the SEC with South Carolina, Alabama and Kentucky — all of whom won their games. Auburn won the head-to-head tiebreaker with the Gamecocks.

Johni Broome had 14 points, six rebounds and five assists for Auburn. Williams scored 13. Both were honored on Senior Night before the game. Dylan Cardwell added 10 points.

Silas Demary Jr. led Georgia with 15 points and made all three attempts on 3s. Russel Tchewa added 14 points and 10 rebounds while Noah Thomasson scored. 12.

Auburn pushed its lead to 14 points six times in the first half, the last coming on Williams' fast-break dunk at the buzzer. He slammed it home after a bounce pass from Chad Baker-Mazara following a missed Georgia free throw with 4 seconds left.

It was the team's 17th assist among 19 first-half baskets, and the Tigers finished with 29.

BIG PICTURE

Georgia: Started freshmen Blue Cain, Demary and Dylan James for the second straight game. Made 7 of 22 3-pointers and 17 of 30 free throw attempts.

Auburn: Swept Georgia for the fourth time since 2018. Before that stretch, the Tigers hadn't swept a home-and-home series with the Bulldogs since 1986. ... Had assists on 10 of its first 11 baskets, from 10 different players.

WILLIAMS' FINALE

It was the home finale for Williams, one of only three fifth-year seniors in the SEC who played all four years at the same school. Williams is the winningest player in program history with 110.

UP NEXT

Both teams head to Nashville, Tennessee, for the SEC Tournament.

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