NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Auburn Tigers know they were counted out even before the Southeastern Conference Tournament began. Winning only four games in league play does that to a team.
That's what makes their incredible run that much sweeter.
KT Harrell scored 15-straight points for Auburn, including a 3 in the final second of regulation to force overtime, and the 13th-seeded Tigers upset No. 4 seed LSU 73-70 Friday in the quarterfinals. This is the Tigers' third win in as many days here.
"We knew how good we are, even though our record didn't show it," Harrell said. "We just knew we had to pick it up defensively. That's what the problem was all season. And we're just proud of everybody and staying together and staying focused on what we have to do to try to win games. And we're just happy to be moving on."
Harrell took over the game in the final 2:35 of regulation and the opening minutes of overtime. He outscored LSU 11-3 with his 3 from the top of the key with 0.7 seconds left tying it up at 64, then scored the first four points of overtime on free throws giving Auburn its first lead of the game.
"The team was smart enough to find him, and he was good enough to finish the job," Auburn coach Bruce Pearl said of Harrell.
Auburn Tigers (15-19) now will play top-ranked and No. 1 seed Kentucky in the semifinals Saturday.
Harrell wound up matching his career-high with 29 points, hitting 15 of 18 at the free throw line. Malcolm Canada added 14 points. Auburn hadn't won this many tournament games since winning four straight along with the title in 1985, but Pearl was hired to make the Tigers relevant again in basketball and to be a factor in the SEC.
"The way our kids play hard, the way they don't quit and the way they believe in each other, they're making some history," Pearl said.
LSU (22-10) now waits to learn its NCAA Tournament destination having lost two of its last three. Coach Johnny Jones said his Tigers don't control their own destiny anymore.
"We have been in a tough conference and we're hopeful on Sunday that our name is called," Jones said.
Harrell hit two free throws with 3:45 left in overtime giving Auburn a 66-64 lead, and he got a steal, then hit two more free throws when fouled.
LSU had its chances to force a second overtime. First, Hornsby missed a 3-pointer off the front rim, then he rushed another 3. Harrell missed two free throws, giving LSU a final chance. But Patterson's 3 hit off the side of the backboard.
"We still had some time, but I thought it was just another look I could make as well," Hornsby said of his second missed 3. "But it just fell short again."
Auburn: The Tigers set school records this season both in free throws attempted (840) and made (557) coming into this game. They just couldn't get to the line as much as LSU despite having a 26-18 scoring edge in the paint. They did go 24 of 36 at the line.
LSU: Hornsby now has scored in double figures 15 straight games, tying Tasmin Mitchell's streak in 2009-10. ... The Tigers now have lost the past two years in the quarterfinals. ... The Tigers went 25 of 44 at the free throw line and outrebounded Auburn 47-39.
FIGHT FIGHT: Auburn forward Jordon Granger was ejected with 13:48 left after he got tired of Jordan Mickey's elbows near his chin and neck as they positioned for a rebound. Granger punched Mickey in the back of the head and then appeared to jab a left at the LSU forward before they were separated with Jones grabbing Mickey. That will leave Auburn short-handed against Kentucky.
Auburn: Will play No. 1 and top-seeded Kentucky in the semifinals on Saturday.
LSU: Waiting for NCAA Tournament announcement.