NO. 19 GEORGIA 85, NO. 24 AUBURN 79

Balanced 'Dawgs topple Tigers

Published: Sunday, January 26, 2003 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, January 26, 2003 at 12:58 a.m.
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Georgia's Steve Thomas looks to score between Auburn's Kyle Davis, right, and Nathan Watson on Saturday in Athens, Ga.

(AP Photo)
ATHENS, Ga. - Georgia coach Jim Harrick looked at the scoresheet and smiled.
He didn't mind a bit that his best player, Jarvis Hayes, scored only 12 points. Everyone else contributed, and that made the coach happy.
With Hayes hindered by an injury, the 19th-ranked Bulldogs turned to some of their lesser-known players to beat No. 24 Auburn 85-79 on Saturday.
Steve Thomas had 16 points and 11 rebounds, while Chris Daniels and Damien Wilkins each scored 12 points to help the Bulldogs overcome a poor showing by Hayes.
Ezra Williams led the Bulldogs with 19 points.
"We're a much better team with five guys in double figures," Harrick said. "I like that much better than the other day."
In Georgia's previous game, Williams scored 29 points and Hayes added 23 in an overtime victory over Tennessee. On Saturday, the Bulldogs proved they are more than a two-man team.
"We've got a complete team," said Hayes, who was slowed by a hip flexor. "It's not always me or Ezra. We've got other guys who are capable of stepping up."
Georgia (12-4, 4-1 Southeastern Conference) handed the Western Division-leading Tigers (15-4, 4-2) their second straight league loss. Auburn lost at Kentucky on Wednesday.
"We have got a good team," coach Cliff Ellis said. "The SEC is a bear. We led Kentucky with 12 to go, and we were in this one down to the wire. It was a great game."
Hayes was only 3-of-12 from the field and finished far below his average of 18.5 per game. But the Bulldogs shot 59 percent in the second half and made 17 of 18 free throws overall - 9-of-10 in the final 1:23 to seal the victory.
Brandon Robinson had a career-high 25 points, including a spinning, double-pumping dunk after he stole the ball from Thomas and drove the length of the court.

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