Auburn 65, Hawaii 62

Rob Chubb scored the go-ahead basket on a dunk with 3 seconds
left in Auburn’ 65-62 victory over Hawaii on Thursday night in the
first round of the Diamond Head Classic.

Frankie Sullivan had 17 points to lead the Tigers (8-1) to their
fourth straight victory. Auburn is off to its best start since the
1999-2000 team opened 16-1.

The Tigers will face Long Beach State in the semifinals Friday
night. The 49ers beat No. 14 Xavier 68-58.

The Rainbow Warriors (5-5) had won three straight. They will
face the Musketeers in the consolation bracket.

”We got out with the win,” Auburn coach Tony Barbee said.
”Hawaii is a good team and we played on their home court. The
crowd was great and was into it and made things hard. But at the
end of the day, it was a heavyweight fight. They were throwing
punches. We were throwing punches and we landed the last one.”

Hawaii took its only lead, at 62-61, with 8 seconds left on
Vander Joaquim’s jump hook.

On Auburn’s ensuing possession, Varez Ward received the inbounds
pass near half court, drove into the paint and passed to Chubb for
the uncontested dunk. Auburn’s Chris Denson stole Hawaii’s inbounds
pass and added a free throw to close out the scoring.

Sullivan was 3 of 7 from 3-point range and had seven rebounds
and six assists. Chubb scored 14 points, and Kenny Gabriel added 13
points and nine rebounds. The Tigers were just 1 of 2 from the
free-throw line in the first half, and finished 7 of 11.

”We showed some great poise on the road,” Sullivan said.
”(Hawaii) had a great crowd behind them. They played great. They
weren’t missing too many shots. It’s great to have a victory.”

Barbee echoed Sullivan.

”We didn’t pass our first road test at Seton Hall and this is
the second true road test and I was proud the way they responded,”
Barbee said. ”I talk about there’s going to be adversity in every
game. There was adversity tonight. We weren’t making shots. We were
turning the ball over. They made some big shots late, but we didn’t
let that affect us.”

Zane Johnson scored 18 points to lead Hawaii. Joston Thomas
added 12, and Joaquim had 10 points and nine rebounds.