Auburn rallies past Milwaukee 83-73 in Pearl debut

AUBURN, Ala. (AP) KT Harrell scored 20 points and Cinmeon Bowers collected 18 points and 17 rebounds to lead Auburn to an 83-73, come-from-behind victory over Milwaukee Friday night in coach Bruce Pearl’s debut.

The Tigers overcame a 12-point deficit in the final 11 minutes to win their opener under the former Tennessee coach, returning from three years out of coaching since his firing after an NCAA investigation.

Harrell, Auburn’s top returning scorer, had 18 points in the second half. He hit a 3-pointer and scored on a basket and free throw to spark a 19-2 run after Milwaukee (0-1) jumped ahead 55-43.

Graduate transfers Antoine Mason and K.C. Ross-Miller had big Auburn debuts. Mason scored 19 points and Ross-Miller added 13.

Akeem Springs led Milwaukee with 21 points while Justin Jordan had 11 and JeVon Lyle 10.

Pearl, a former Milwaukee coach, generated enthusiasm for a program that has long struggled.