BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WTVM) - The ride ended on Tuesday for both Auburn High Tigers basketball teams. The girls were eliminated by Hoover 55-36, while the boys saw their season end at the hands of Oak Mountain, 45-37, in the AHSAA Class 7A state semifinals played at Bartow Arena at UAB.
The Tigers girls (17-6) came in as heavy underdogs to Hoover (31-1), but kept pace with the Buccaneers until an 18-1 run put the game away. Olivia Porter had 13 points to lead Auburn, while Syriah Daniels added 10.
“We knew that they were going to bring pressure,” head coach Courtney Pritchett said. “We knew they were going to be a good team just coming out. I don’t think we handled it very well at the beginning of the game, but that kind of pressure and that kind of athletic ability is hard to simulate in practice, and so for the girls to see it for the first time and to be punched with it, I think they had to respond and I don’t know, We did a good job of it earlier on in the game.”
The Tigers boys (22-4) led 19-15 at the half and extended their lead to eight points when Oak Mountain (23-9) went on a 15-2 run in the third quarter take a five point lead into the final quarter. The Tigers would manage to cut the deficit to two, but never recovered, shooting just 24% from the field (13-of-54) on the day.
“We had a great game plan,” said head coach Chris Brandt. “We knew exactly what they were going to do. I wouldn’t change a thing on the defensive end, but what happened was the ball just didn’t go into the hole. We’ve been a pretty high-explosive offensive team this year, and it was just one of those games. You hate it, it happens in basketball, it just did not fall for us.”
Bryson Clague led the Tigers in scoring with nine points.