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11/17/22 Basketball articles


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Former Auburn hooper posts career-high numbers in G-League contest

Taylor Jones
1–2 minutes

533e72d47257e4a960786ec63060bab4

Last offseason, Sharife Cooper signed with the Cleveland Cavaliers after spending his rookie season with the hometown Atlanta Hawks for the 2021-22 season.

Prior to this season, Cooper was waived by the Cleveland Cavaliers but found a way to be included in the organization’s G-League club, the Cleveland Charge. In Tuesday’s game against the Grand Rapids Gold, Cooper posted numbers that may get him noticed by the Cavs.

In a 122-116 loss to the Gold on Tuesday, Cooper went 16-of-29 from the field, scoring 42 points. It marks the second straight game for Cooper in which he scored at least 30 points. He also recorded 12 assists.

Cooper spent one season on the Plains, where he earned SEC All-Freshman honors for the 2020-21 season. In 12 games, Cooper averaged 20.2 points and 4.3 per game for the Tigers.

During his rookie season with the Hawks, Cooper saw minimal action. He appeared in 13 games, averaging 3.0 minutes per outing.

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 Watch : Wendell Green Jr. drains one from Opelika

Andrew Stefaniak

~2 minutes

Logo Wen is back!

Wendell Green Jr. has been off to a hot start posting great numbers for the Tigers this season. 

Green Jr. has been putting up a lot of points but hasn't been shooting well from deep. Well, that hasn't been the case so far against Winthrop.

He has nine points on 3-4 from deep, including one three-pointer from way back that sent the jungle into a frenzy. 

Green Jr. is going to be a lot of fun to watch this season as he runs this offense. 

For this Auburn team to be successful, Green Jr. has to shoot the ball well. 

Let's watch Green Jr. make one from deep.

https://twitter.com/AuburnMBB/status/1592687433794977793?ref_src=twsrc^tfw|twcamp^tweetembed|twterm^1592687433794977793|twgr^871748900c9c9e61c42129ccca7957578fc29e59|twcon^s1_c10&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.si.com%2Fcollege%2Fauburn%2Fbasketball%2Fauburn-basketball-wendell-green-jr-winthrophttps://twitter.com/AuburnMBB/status/1592687433794977793?ref_src=twsrc^tfw|twcamp^tweetembed|twterm^1592687433794977793|twgr^871748900c9c9e61c42129ccca7957578fc29e59|twcon^s1_c10&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.si.com%2Fcollege%2Fauburn%2Fbasketball%2Fauburn-basketball-wendell-green-jr-winthrop

 

Tuesday’s game against the Winthrop Eagles is a non-bracketed game of the 2022 Cancun Challenge. Next week, the Tigers will play in the Riviera Division (Bradley, Liberty, and Northwestern), while Winthrop is in the Mayan Division (Purdue Fort Wayne, Eastern Michigan, and Southern Miss).

Entering Tuesday, Auburn leads the all-time series with Winthrop 5-1. The most recent meeting was on Nov. 24, 2017, in Auburn with the Tigers securing a 119-85 victory. It tied as the most points squared by an Auburn squad in the Bruce Pearl Era next to 119 versus Northwestern State on Nov. 27, 2015.

Edited by aubiefifty
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  1. Auburn Basketball

Chance Westry’s versatility on display in long-anticipated Auburn basketball debut

  • Updated: Nov. 17, 2022, 10:17 a.m.|
  • Published: Nov. 17, 2022, 10:13 a.m.
Chance Westry vs. Winthrop

Chance Westry (10) during the Basketball Game between the Auburn Tigers and Winthrop Eagles at Neville Arena in Auburn, AL on Tuesday, Nov 15, 2022. Zach Bland/Auburn TigersZach Bland/Auburn Tigers

 
 
 
NEW!
 

Bruce Pearl tried to hide his excitement, but it peeked through in subtle laughs as he smiled during his postgame press conference.

 

Four-star freshman Chance Westry finally saw the court for Auburn following preseason knee surgery, and while the versatile 6-foot-6 newcomer played just 17 minutes in his college debut, Pearl was brimming with excitement over what Westry’s return meant for Auburn, not just against Winthrop, but what it could mean for the team moving forward this season.

 

Read more Auburn hoops: Why Bruce Pearl still wants more from Johni Broome after dominant double-double vs. Winthrop

 
 

Dylan Cardwell’s rim protection a ‘factor’ for No. 13 Auburn early this season

 
 

Auburn signs top-five point guard to 2023 recruiting class

 
 

“It was great to have him out there,” Pearl said. “You know, he’s going to continue to — you know, he’ll play well. He could do a lot with and without the ball. He’s a good player.”

 
 

In his first college action, Westry came off the bench for four stretches during Auburn’s 89-65 win against Winthrop on Tuesday night at Neville Arena. He finished with just five points (on 2-of-6 shooting), two rebounds, two assists, two turnovers and three fouls — each of which came in quick succession in the first half — and he was one of only two players to see the court and finish with a negative plus/minus (minus-4) against the Eagles, but Westry flashed some of the versatility and potential that had Pearl likening him to former Auburn All-SEC guard Samir Doughty this summer.

 

During his first stint of action, Westry played point guard in a lineup that also included K.D. Johnson in the backcourt. On Westry’s first possession on the floor, he drove the lane and knocked down a midrange pull-up jumper, finishing it through contact and completing the three-point play at the line. That gave Auburn an early 17-7 lead. A few possessions later, he notched his first career assist, driving baseline and drawing a defender in the air before a nifty dump-off to Dylan Cardwell for a dunk.

His second rotation on the floor saw Westry play off the ball, as fellow freshman Tre Donaldson ran point. Then in the second half, he saw time on the wing — rotating behind Allen Flanigan — as Chris Moore didn’t play after halftime for precautionary reasons.

“It was great to get Chance back,” Pearl said. “It’s crazy, the kid played one, two and three; he played three positions tonight…. So, you know, it was good.”

Westry’s debut was long anticipated after he missed much of the preseason while recovering from right knee surgery. Westry underwent an arthroscopic procedure on his right knee on Oct. 6—alongside Pearl, who had a similar procedure done that day—and was expected to miss three to four weeks. That timeline was extended slightly, as Auburn was cautious in its approach with the former four-star prospect.

Westry began practicing full-speed, though with no contact, last week, and he went through early warmups before Auburn’s game against USF last Friday. By Tuesday, he was ready to go.

“We’re just never going to rush him, never,” Pearl said. “So, but he has missed so much. He missed the entire fall, but — again, put him in a very tough spot tonight playing him in three positions.”

Westry responded, though, and relished the opportunity to finally display his versatility on the floor of Neville Arena.

 

“Just being out there on the floor, doing what my team needs, being off the ball, being on the ball — those are just good positions that I like to play,” Westry said.

 
 

While Auburn is easing Westry back into action, it’s hard to deny the skillset and high ceiling he brings to an already-deep roster. He showed flashes of that during the team’s summer tour in Israel, and it received a warm welcome Tuesday night against Winthrop. Westry said he’s still not quite 100 percent—and that’s to be expected, at this point—but he’s eager to keep progressing and getting more comfortable as his role within the Tigers’ rotation continues to develop.

“The game was a little slower than practice, because at practice, we practice so fast and at a high pace,” Westry said. “So, when I got out there, I was in good shape. Just ready to compete.”

Tom Green is an Auburn beat reporter for Alabama Media Group. Follow him on Twitter @Tomas_Verde.

 
 
 

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Edited by aubiefifty
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