Gold Nuggets open trip with exhibition loss at Auburn

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AUBURN, Ala. — Xavier University of Louisiana maintained a single-digit deficit against Auburn through 23 minutes before the Tigers pulled away for a 70-44 women’s basketball victory Thursday.

The Gold Nuggets (6-4) counted the game as an exhibition, but the Tigers (9-3) counted it as a regular-season game. It was Auburn’s sixth straight victory.

XULA trailed 27-20 at halftime and 31-22 early in the third quarter before Auburn closed the period with a 15-6 run.
Mikayla Bates scored nine points and Dasia Pitre eight for XULA. Maya Trench, the Nuggets’ 5-foot-2 sophomore point guard, produced game highs of eight rebounds and four assists.

Bates, Essence Wells and Taylor Jones made two 3-pointers apiece.

Janiah McKay scored 17 points, Daisa Alexander 13, Abigayle Jackson 12 and Jazmine Jones 10 for Auburn.

The Gold Nuggets had a 7-2 advantage in made 3-pointers, and the NAIA member outrebounded the P5/SEC opponent 38-36.

Auburn outshot XULA 43.3 to 32.1 percent from the floor and was plus-17 in turnovers, committing 13 and gaining 30. The Tigers dominated at the line, making 16-of-27 free throws to XULA’s 3-of-5. The Gold Nuggets missed their only free-throw attempt of the second half.

It was the first of three road games in six days for XULA. The Gold Nuggets will visit unbeaten LSU-Shreveport at noon Saturday, then travel to Dallas for a 2 p.m. Tuesday game at Paul Quinn.

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