Through 20 minutes in Auburn Arena on Tuesday night, Marquette and Auburn had a competitive contest going on. The Tigers went to the locker room with a two point lead, thanks to four late free throws from Jazmine Jones. Neither team shot the ball well in the opening stanza, and after turning the ball over one-third of the time, Marquette was probably a little lucky to be as close as they were.
Then the second half started, and everything went south for the Golden Eagles in a hurry. The first three MU possessions ended in a turnover, and after opening the half with two misses that they got the offensive rebounds on, Auburn hit their next six shots. That made it 44-32 in favor of the Tigers, and things never got better for Marquette. Three more turnovers allowed AU to keep building their lead, and before seven minutes had wound off the clock after intermission, MU found themselves in a 20 point hole.
Even though the game was out of control at that point, it didn't slow Auburn down. The Tigers had an effective field goal percenage of 58.8% in the second half, while Marquette only mustered an eFG% of 26.7%. MU shot 2-11 behind the arc in the second half, mixing in five of those misses with the aforementioned turnover problem in the early goings on of the second period. Auburn would lead by as many as 31 on a Neydja Petihomme layup with just over five minutes remaining before the Golden Eagles knocked that down a bit in garbage time.
As you can guess, turnovers were a massive problem for the Golden Eagles. They committed 27 in the game, split mostly right down the middle in each half. MU's starting guard trio of Arlesia Morse, Kenisha Bell, and Tia Elbert combined for 19 of the 27. Elbert and Bell split their miscues evenly between the two halves, while I suppose we have to give credit to Arlesia Morse for cleaning up her game after committing all five of her turnovers in the first half.
Up Next: The Golden Eagles have their end of Badger Hate Week to deal with. They'll be in Madison to take on Wisconsin on Saturday at 1pm. The Badgers are 1-4 so far this season, including losses to Drake and East Carolina. They'll be in Miami tomorrow night to take on the Hurricanes as part of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. I wonder if Carolyn Kieger will give her old boss Katie Meier a call on Friday...