LAS VEGAS – The Auburn women’s basketball team will face their toughest test of the season so far this weekend at the Las Vegas Invitational, which will be played on Friday and Saturday at The Mirage Casino and Resort on the Las Vegas Strip.
Auburn (3-1) meets No. 6/5 Indiana (5-0) at 7:45 PM CT on Friday and Colorado State (3-1) at 5:30 PM CT on Saturday.
IN THE AIR
›› Brit Bowen receives the radio call from Vegas which starts 15 minutes before the tip for each game. Friday’s game will be broadcast on WQSI 93.9 FM and Saturday’s game can be heard on WTGZ 95.9 FM. Both games can be heard on AuburnTigers.com and the Auburn Athletics mobile app.
›› FloHoops will broadcast a live stream of the tournament. Fans can purchase a subscription to watch the games on FloHoops.com.
›› Redshirt sophomore Romi Levy had her first double-double of her career and all 13 Auburn players scored as the Tigers ran 88-49 from Alabama State Sunday afternoon at Neville Arena.
›› The Tigers (3-1) shot a season-best 50.7 percent and got a lot of performance from the bench, who scored almost half of Auburn’s points that night.
›› Levy, who came on from the bench, finished with a career-high 16 points and 11 rebounds for her first double-double of her career and Auburn’s second of the season. She also filled the stats list with three steals, two assists and two blocks in just over 20 minutes of action.
›› Aicha Coulibaly led all goalscorers with 21 points and had a career-high six steals; She also had seven rebounds. Sanja Wells hit double digits for the second time this season with 10 points remaining with a pair of blocks. And newbie Sydney Shaw had a strong performance with eight points, a team-high six assists and two steals.
AN AUBURN WIN OVER INDIANA WOULD…
›› Improve the Tigers to an all-time 3-0 against the Hoosiers.
›› Be Auburn’s first top-five win on a street or neutral venue since the 1997 SEC tournament (#4 Georgia, March 1 in Chattanooga, Tennessee).
›› Improve Auburn to 27-14 all-time against the Big Ten.
AN AUBURN VICTORY OVER COLORADO ST. WANT…
›› Be Auburn’s fourth win in the last five games played on the same day as the Iron Bowl.
›› Improve Auburn to 6-3 against current members of the Mountain West Conference.
AUBURN INDIANA SERIES
›› This is the third meeting between Auburn and Indiana. The Tigers won the first two — a massive comeback from a 17-point deficit in the fourth quarter to claim a 71-67 win at home in 2016 and a 65-53 away win in 2017.
LAST MEETING: December 3, 2017 in Bloomington
Maroon 65, Indiana 53
›› After a career-best 25 points from Daisa Alexander and free-throw shooting in the fourth quarter, Auburn held off a late Indiana rally for a 65-53 win over the Hoosiers at Assembly Hall.
›› The Tigers saw a 15-point lead down to just one point early in the fourth quarter, but Auburn’s best free-throw performance of the season saved the day as the Tigers hit 10 of 11 attempts at the line in the final period for the win seal.
›› Alexander broke her previous career high with 25 points and scored 12 of them in the fourth quarter when the Tigers pulled away late. She was 9 of 14 off the floor and hit three 3-pointers, then knocked down all four of her free throw attempts. Two of them came to the basket with drives, where she was fouled, made the layup and calmly sunk the free throw.
›› Auburn shot 48.0 percent from the floor, including a 52.3 percent mark in the second half. The Tigers forced Indiana (4-4) to 23 turnovers and converted them to 25 points. The Hoosiers were 37.5 percent off the ground but kept the game within reach with strong outside shots as they hit 5 of 10 3-point attempts in the second half.
AUBURN COLORADO STATE SERIES
›› This is the first game between Auburn and Colorado State in women’s basketball.
›› Indiana is 5-0 for the year and ranked 6th in the AP and 5th by the coaches. The Hoosiers’ win so far is a 79-67 away win in Tennessee; It’s the only game in which they haven’t scored at least 80 points.
›› Indiana averages 89.2 points/game, which ranks 9th nationally.
›› Mackenzie Holmes leads four Hoosiers averaging double digits with 17.4 points/game.
DECLARATION OF COLORADO STATE
›› Colorado State is 3-1 this season and has big wins against BYU and Montana to thank.
›› The Rams lead the national 3-point percentage this year with 51.1% from distance (48-94). They also lead the nation in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.46) and lowest turnovers per game (6.5).
›› McKenna Hofschild leads CSU with 17.2 points/game and ranks second in the nation with 9.0 assists/game.
›› Auburn is 3-1 with three home wins over Sam Houston, South Alabama and Alabama State.
>> jr Aicha Coulibaly was a preseason All-SEC second-team selection after receiving a postseason All-SEC second-team nod the previous season. She is Auburn’s leading returnee in scoring (17.1 ppg), rebounds (7.5 rpg), and steals (2.2 ppg). Last season, she placed ninth in the SEC. She scored 24 points and had 10 rebounds in the season opener against Sam Houston for her sixth career double-double and leads the Tigers with 18.8 points/game.
›› Redshirt senior Honesty Scott Grayson returns for her third season on the court for Auburn. In four games, she leads the Tigers with 3.8 assists/game and an 8.8 point average. She was second on the team last year with 13.0 points and 5.7 rebounds per game and started in 27 of 28 games.
>> Senior Sanja Wells was the SEC’s leading free throw taker in 2021-22, hitting 90.5% of her attempts (76-84). That percentage ranked sixth in the nation. Wells has broken the 10-point mark twice in four games and is 7-8 at the FT line so far this season.
›› Redshirt sophomore Romi Levy returns to action after missing the 2021-22 season with a cruciate ligament rupture. In just her second return game, she had a career-high 16 points and 11 rebounds against Alabama State for her first double-double of her career.
›› Auburn’s newcomers all made an immediate impression with three newcomers – Kaitlyn Duhon, Sydney Shaw and Kharysa Richardson – Start each of the first four games. Duhon had 17 points in the win over South Alabama and Shaw is second on the team with 3.0 assists per game.
›› Saturday’s game against Colorado State is the seventh time in the last 11 seasons that Auburn will play a women’s basketball game on the same day as the Auburn-Alabama football game.
›› Auburn’s last five women’s basketball games, played on the same day as the Iron Bowl, were decided by a total of nine points – 2-point wins over Samford, Dayton and Minnesota, a 2-point loss at Winthrop and a 1-point loss to Northwest.
›› This is the second time Auburn has played on the same day as the Iron Bowl in Las Vegas. The last time was November 30, 2013, the day of the legendary Kick Six. Auburn WBB faced No. 15 Iowa State later that night.
›› Auburn wraps up November with a Wednesday matinee at home against Little Rock on November 30th. The tip is set for noon CT.