It was 12 years ago that Auburn last made a Final Four. It was also the last year they made it to and won a state title game. Final Four, check. State title game, check. Just one more to go.
The Tigers fought off a game, overachieving Vestavia Hills squad to advance to the state finals with a 44-37 victory.
Garrison Brooks paved the way for the win as he scored 24 for Auburn, shooting 8-of-13 from the field and 7-of-8 from the free throw line. Antoine Pitts was the next highest scorer for Auburn with eight. No other Tiger scored more than four. Brooks also grabbed nine boards.
For Vestavia, Mac Smith was main contributor with 14 points and 10 rebounds while Scott Morrison chipped in 11. But the Rebels’ biggest enemy was themselves as they shot just 5-of-25 from behind the arc and just 29.4% from the field.
Vestavia was able to take the lead from Auburn for the first time since the second quarter midway through the fourth, but in the end, Auburn went on an 8-0 run to close the game. The Tigers led or were tied for all but just 3:10.
Auburn will take on the winner of the Mountain Brook vs McGill-Toolen game in the other semifinal. Tip-off is scheduled for Saturday at 5:45 PM.