The tigers weren’t fear of the Tar Heels’ quick-hitting attack. Now, Auburn is going come the elite Eight because that the second time ever.

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The Auburn tigers have come to be the many unlikely team come break into the elite Eight of march Madness. Auburn knocked out top-seeded north Carolina through convincing 97-80 success in the Sweet 16 to store their NCAA tournament run alive. It’s the very first time Auburn has progressed to the regional final due to the fact that 1986.

North Carolina is the very first No. 1 seed to exit the tournament.

Auburn wasn’t fear of a Tar Heels team that played in ~ the fastest speed of any kind of team left standing in the tournament. Instead of make the efforts to slow-moving the tempo, the tigers ran with UNC every night. Auburn took the lead just prior to halftime top top a buzzer-beating layup J’Von McCormick, and never looked back. Bruce Pearl’s team kept its foot ~ above the gas and turned the game into a blowout midway v the 2nd half.

Auburn’s victory was marred through a severe knee injury to Chuma Okeke, the sophomore front who was in the center of a breakout performance. Okeke was already considered the Tigers ideal NBA prospect, and also reinforced that by placing up 20 points and 11 rebounds prior to the injury.

Here’s exactly how the many tigers earned the victory.

Auburn made it rain from three-point range

The Tigers averaged 11 three-pointers per video game on the season. In this game. Auburn drained 17-of-37 triples, an excellent for a man 45.9 percent clip.

Danjel Purifoy hit 4-of-6 three-pointers off the bench. Okeke and also Malik Dunbar (13 points) every hit 3 three-pointers. Auburn was an especially hot in the second half, hitting 67 percent the its threes in the second half.

EVERYTHING is falling because that Auburn! #Sweet16#MarchMadness |

— NCAA in march Madness (
marchmadness) march 30, 2019

Auburn to be a three-point hefty team all season. The Tigers take it 49.7 percent of their shots native three-point selection on the season, good for No. 8 in the country. They make 38.2 percent of those attempts. This was the Tigers play at the peak of their abilities.

Auburn pushed the pace against UNC

Auburn didn’t play super rapid for many of the season. The Tigers to be No. 158 out of 351 DI teams in pace, per KenPom. Yet on Friday night, through the season top top the line, Pearl’s team came out all set to beat UNC in ~ its own game. The Tigers pushed the round in shift all night, looking for offensive methods early in the shoot clock and even advertise the round off made baskets for the Tar Heels.

Trying to keep up with this pace like... #MarchMadness | #Sweet16

— NCAA in march Madness (
marchmadness) march 30, 2019

Credit veteran allude guard Jared Harper for controlling the tempo. Harper perfect the night with nine points and 11 assists. Auburn aided on 20 of their 36 provides on the night.

Auburn battled on the glass

North Carolina is a good rebounding team, particularly on the attack glass. While the Tar Heels got hold of 14 offensive boards ~ above this night, Auburn hosted its very own with 10 attack rebounds the its own.

UNC to be No. 1 in the nation in fag margin. Auburn wasn’t in the top-200. But the Tigers’ task on the glass, led by Okeke’s valiant performance prior to the injury, gave them a possibility not just to contend with phibìc Carolina, yet to rotate this game into a blowout.

Auburn is rolling right now

The Tigers room playing their ideal basketball of the season as soon as it matters most. After an 11-7 document in SEC play that experienced them end up fourth in the conference, Auburn won the SEC tournament and also now take it an 11-game winning streak right into the elite Eight.

Three mainly ago, the best team Auburn had actually beaten to be ... Florida? Washington? every the Tigers have actually done due to the fact that is success the SEC tournament, with the elite Eight and also topple Tennessee (twice), Kansas and also UNC.

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— Jeff Eisenberg (
JeffEisenberg) march 30, 2019

Auburn has never to be to the last Four. This team look at talented enough to carry out it.