Broome’s season-high 27 powers No. 16 Auburn to win

South Carolina head coach Lamont Paris talks with South Carolina guard Chico Carter Jr. (2)...
South Carolina head coach Lamont Paris talks with South Carolina guard Chico Carter Jr. (2) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Auburn, Saturday, Jan. 21, 2023, in Columbia, S.C.((AP Photo/Sean Rayford))
Published: Jan. 21, 2023 at 6:09 PM EST
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(AP) - Johni Broome had a season-high 27 points and 11 rebounds as No. 16 Auburn took control late in the opening half to run past struggling South Carolina 81-66 on Saturday.

Broome’s performance helped the Tigers to their fifth straight win and offset a career-best 30 points from Gamecocks’ freshman Gregory “GG” Jackson II.

The 6-foot-10 Broome took full advantage of South Carolina’s undersized interior for the Tigers (16-3, 6-1 Southeastern Conference).

He hit 12 of his 17 shots in 30 minutes for his sixth double-double this season and fifth against an SEC opponent.

Auburn got out in front early, but the Gamecocks (8-11, 1-5) were still in the game despite shooting less than 20% from the floor and not hitting a field goal for more than five minutes in the first half. That’s when the Tigers closed the half with a 12-3 run and eventually led by as many as 26 points in the final 20 minutes.

The Gamecocks finished a three-game homestand with three double-digit losses, all after a stunning win over Kentucky at Rupp Arena on Jan. 10. South Carolina has not led any SEC home game at any point this season.

Wendell Green Jr. had 16 points and Jaylin Williams had 12 for Auburn.

Meechie Johnson was South Carolina’s only other player in double figures with 11 points.

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South Carolina goes to Florida on Wednesday night.