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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Aggies look to rebound against Mississippi State

Texas+A%26amp%3BM+basketball+committed+16+turnovers+during+its+62-+58+loss+to+Missouri.
Photo by Courtesy of Jennifer Mosbrucker

Texas A&M basketball committed 16 turnovers during its 62- 58 loss to Missouri.

Just one week ago, the Aggies were riding a four-game win streak and coming off arguably their best performance of the season, a 85-74 win over No. 21 Kentucky. The Aggies also found themselves ranked No. 21 in the AP Poll.
One week later, the Aggies have dropped two games against Mizzou and Arkansas and have fallen out of the AP Poll rankings. The maroon and white are also battling to secure a place in the NCAA Tournament, and as of right now the Aggies are tabbed a No. 6 seed by ESPN’s Joe Lunardi Bracketology rankings. Despite Lunardi’s ranking, Texas A&M forward Robert Williams said he doesn’t think his team has done enough to reach the NCAA Tournament yet.
“Nah, definitely not, anything can happen at anytime,” Williams said. “We just have to take it one game at a time and get some key wins, tomorrow would definitely be a key win.”
The maroon and white now find themselves at (17-10, 6-8 SEC) with four games remaining. A&M will look to reverse course as they host Mississippi State on Tuesday night.
The Aggies have found the majority of their success at Reed Arena this season, holding a 12-2 record playing at Reed Arena, compared to their 2-7 mark on the road. Williams said he attributes this discrepancy to a superior confidence felt at home.
“We’re definitely 10 times more confident because we have the beautiful 12th Man and all the support here, I mean who doesn’t want to play at home,” Williams said.
In order to keep the Aggies impressive home record intact, the maroon and white will have to keep a keen eye on a pair of Mississippi State guards, Quinndary and Nick Weatherspoon, who lead the Bulldogs in points with 14.7 and 11.1 points per game, respectively. The brothers are just two of the loaded Mississippi State guard depth chart, which A&M head coach Billy Kennedy deemed as the best rotation in the SEC.
“I think collectively they’ve got the best five guards in our league, the most athletic guards and we have to do a good job of keeping them out of the paint,” Kennedy said.
Conversely, the Aggies are averaging 75.2 points per game on the season, however, they netted an average of 66.5 points per game last week. Kennedy said the lack of production is due to poor three-point shooting. The Aggies have shot 22.5 percent (9-of-40) from behind the arc in their last two games.
“In this league the threes and the twos [guards] seem to be the best players from an offensive standpoint,” Kennedy said. “As big as we are and playing Robert and Tyler at the four and the five, we rely on three-point shooting.”
Junior DJ Hogg, who leads the Aggies in three-point shots made this season, is 1-of-10 from behind the arc in the last two games. Kennedy said they need him to get back to making his shots.
“He’s had some good looks, we’ve got to do a better job of helping him get more,” Kennedy said.
Kennedy said he recognizes the Aggies game against Mississippi State is has major postseason implications and his team needs to finish this year on a high note to make the NCAA Tournament.
“It’s better to win late so that people will remember you, if you lose four or five straight it’s hard for someone to garner you get into the NCAA Tournament,” Kennedy said. “It’s all about how you close so we’ve got to pick up our play at this time.”
The Aggies will host Mississippi State on Tuesday at Reed Arena and tipoff is slated for 6 p.m. The game will be televised on SEC Network.

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