Bama Beats Texas A&M at the Buzzer in SEC Tournament

Tyler Owen
March 10, 2018

That was the start of a three-part challenge that Sexton took upon himself to answer.

The Gators have been rolling over the last week in scoring double-digit victories over Alabama and Kentucky. Therefore, it's time for Knox to show why many consider him a 2018 NBA Draft lottery pick.

With the Crimson Tide trailing Texas A&M by one and 4.4 seconds remaining in their second round SEC Tournament Game, Sexton went coast-to-coast and converted a finger roll at the buzzer.

Unless Alabama and Auburn somehow get matched up in the NCAA tournament, their season series will be decided today in the quarterfinals of the SEC tournament in the Scottrade Center.

Sexton would not be denied. As soon as the ball was inbounded to start the second half, everything changed.

Alabama: The Crimson Tide entered the game 56th in the NCAA's RPI ratings despite its late-season woes, thanks in large part to earlier victories this season over ranked opponents such as Auburn, Oklahoma, Florida and Tennessee.

Pearl explained himself after the game. "I mean, he's a tough cover, and he can get downhill and get to the rim".

Even that might be an understatement.

Sexton scored 27 points in 33 minutes on Thursday. Whether it was Davion Mitchell or any other Auburn defender, they simply couldn't keep Sexton in front of them.

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"After a very disappointing game on the road at their place, it was very disheartening how we finished that game", head coach Avery Johnson said.

Not long after, Sexton intercepted an ill-advised cross-court pass, sprinted down court, and delivered a behind-the-back dime to Donta Hall that he slammed home for a rim-rattling dunk. "There's not really going to be a heavily weighed, one-sided meet".

"They told me when I'm open, just shoot it and don't worry about the misses", Sexton said. "When they made their run, it bothered us more than it should have". "Don't worry about missing". "Something we can learn from is that the game's not over until the buzzer goes off". They breed a lot of confidence into our team.

After Auburn went 25-6 during the regular season, including 13-5 in SEC play, to earn the program's third-ever regular-season conference title, the Tigers locked up their first NCAA Tournament berth since 2003 and first postseason appearance since 2009, when Auburn made the NIT. Whatever was actually said, what the team heard seemed to be three little words.

Of the two, Sexton was able to produce some magic on Thursday afternoon.

Auburn's leading rebounder averaging 6.8 per game, the 6-foot-3 Murray savored the prospect of displaying his team's talent on ESPN.

"Body language wasn't great", Pearl said.

He knew, he explained, what Alabama was capable of all along.

"Everybody focuses on the losses", Johnson said.

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