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2019 NCAA Tournament: Auburn survives late threat from New Mexico State

Survive and advance, right?

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-First Round-Auburn vs New Mexico State Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

When you get to the NCAA Tournament, it doesn’t matter how you win. It just matters that you win. The Auburn Tigers proved this point on Thursday afternoon, narrowly pulling out a 78-77 victory over the upset-minded New Mexico State Aggies.

Despite leading by 13 with eight minutes to play, Auburn found themselves leading by just two with one second to go. Aggies guard AJ Harris had a chance to tie the game with a layup, but passed it out to Terrell Brown who was fouled shooting a three pointer. Had Brown made all three, the Aggies would have won the game. However, he made just one of three. But things didn’t end there.

The third free throw was knocked out of bounds by Auburn, so NMSU had a play under the basket with 1.1 seconds to play with a chance to win the game. They drew up a three for Trevelin Queen, but it fell short and Auburn survived.

Jared Harper led the Tigers with 17 points, 14 of which came in the second half. Auburn will face Kansas on Saturday.