AUBURN, Alabama — Chris Denson scored 23 points to lead Auburn to a 75-67 home victory over Murray State on Saturday night.
After scoring only four points in the first half, Denson shot 6-of-10 from the field after halftime. Transfer guard KT Harrell recorded his first career double-double for Auburn (3-1), adding 17 points and 10 rebounds in the win.
The Tigers started to pull away from the Racers with nine minutes remaining in the contest, as a pair of Denson shots sparked a 12-2 Auburn run. Auburn, which forced Murray State (2-3) into early foul trouble, finished the game 23 for 33 from the free throw line.
Jeffrey Moss scored 16 points and hit 4-of-5 3-pointers for Murray State in the loss. Freshman point guard Cameron Payne scored an additional 16 points for the Racers, who have lost all three of their games away from home in the early season.
Although the Tigers had 13 turnovers to the Racers' 11, Auburn outscored Murray State 19-2 off of them.
Auburn, who lost to Murray State by 20 points in the 2012 Charleston Classic, had a 41-31 advantage on the boards Saturday night. Allen Payne and Asauhn Dixon-Tatum pulled down four offensive rebounds apiece for the Tigers.
After a slow offensive start, Murray State cut the Auburn lead to four points at halftime thanks to a buzzer-beater by Moss. The Racers took their only lead of the game early in the second half, but the Tigers quickly answered with a 5-0 run.