Auburn wins battle of the Tigers, clinches SEC championship
Updated On: Dec 08 2013 10:36:14 AM CST
Auburn's Tre Mason may need to check the tread on his shoes; they may be worn after his historic day at the Georgia Dome.
Mason had a record 304 rushing yards on 46 carries and four touchdowns, as No. 3 Auburn beat No. 5 Missouri 59-42 to claim its first SEC Championship since 2010.
Mizzou had no answer for the Auburn ground game, as the Tigers allowed 545 rushing yards. However, Mizzou took to the air, as James Franklin passed for 303 yards and 3 touchdowns.
Henry Josey finished with 123 rushing yards, eclipsing the 1,000 yard mark for the first time in his career.
Dorial Green-Beckham served as a big target for James Franklin, catching six balls for 140 yards.
Mizzou got on the board early with an 43 yard field goal from Andrew Baggett, making it 3-0. Baggett made his fifth field goal from 40-49 yards this year. MU got the ball back after Kony Ealy stripped Auburn quarterback Nick Marshall, and Missouri recovered.
After the field goal, the game turned into a track meet. Auburn responded with a Nick Marshall touchdown throw to Sammie Coates. Then Franklin found Dorial Green-Beckham for the 28 yard touchdown strike, as Mizzou retook the 3-point lead. The former Hillcrest High School star left the game in the first with a shoulder sprain, but would eventually return.
Auburn made it 14-10 after Marshall called his own number for the Tigers’ first rushing score of the game.
Mizzou’s defense brought MU back in it, after Ealy forced his second fumble on the day. Senior EJ Gaines scooped the ball up and scored from 11 yards out to make it 17-14.
In a game with eight lead changes, Auburn and Mizzou continued to trade punches. Tre Mason added two more touchdowns after the Gaines return before Green-Beckham made it a one point ball game with a 55-yard TD catch.
Missouri took a brief lead when Franklin found Marcus Murphy for a 10 yard score. However, Auburn scored four more rushing touchdowns (the Tigers had 6 rushing touchdowns total) and were in control in the fourth quarter.
The Tigers look bound for the first-tier non-BCS bowls. The Capital One Bowl typically takes the SEC Championship game loser, but Missouri could could also go to the Outback or Cotton Bowl.
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