Hugh Freeze and Auburn were a few plays shy of knocking of Alabama in the Iron Bowl Saturday night.

The game ultimately came down to a few costly mistakes for Auburn. Leading late in the 4th quarter, the Tigers muffed a punt, allowing Alabama to set up in Auburn territory. The Tide capitalized, scoring what would be the game-winning touchdown.

“We didn’t play good enough in the critical moments,” Freeze said in his postgame press conference. “It really came down to those few plays in a game like this. There’s a lot of hurt in that locker room and it stinks.”

Freeze’s defense went with the decision to drop 9 on what ultimately was the game winning play for Alabama. Jalen Milroe found an opening and connected with Isaiah Bond, but Freeze believes it was the right call.

“I liked the call,” Freeze said. “I just think we’ve got to sit back there with vision and knock it down.”

Freeze also believes that there could have been a pass interference penalty called on Bond on his game winning catch in the back of the endzone.

“We felt like he pushed off, but couldn’t tell,” Freeze said.

After the game, there wasn’t much Freeze could say to encourage his team.

“I don’t think any coach has the words,” Freeze said. “You tell them you love them and they’ll get through it.”

It was the second time Auburn fell short of a big upset at home, but Freeze knows that “almost” isn’t a win.

“We get judged in this game on wins and losses,” Freeze said. “You feel nothing but hurt.”