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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 face major challenge in game against Kentucky

Point+Guard+Anthony+Collins+prepares+to+shoot+the+ball.
Photo by Photo by: Morgan Engel

Point Guard Anthony Collins prepares to shoot the ball.

It has been a tumultuous two weeks for Aggie basketball.
The team returned to its winning ways Tuesday evening with a 71-56 win over Ole Miss, but now its biggest challenge of the season looms — a home date with the SEC-leading Kentucky Wildcats.
Five straight conference losses removed A&M (19-7, 8-5 SEC) from atop the SEC standings, but a win over the Wildcats would give the Aggies a pulse once again. They received a balanced effort Tuesday night, seeing four players reach double figures.
Senior guard Danuel House led the team, scoring 13 points and reaching 1,500 total points in his collegiate career. Senior point guard Anthony Collins added 10 points and eight assists while freshman center Tyler Davis chipped in with 11 points of his own.
Besides House and Jalen Jones, no other Aggie is averaging double-figure points in conference competition. Senior guard Alex Caruso reached the 1,000-point plateau Tuesday night as well but the Aggies will need more point production from him Saturday night if they want to come out on top.
As a team, A&M surrenders just 65 points per game to opponents on average, holding them to 62.6 when playing at Reed Arena.
Kentucky (19-6, 9-3 SEC) comes in having won three straight, and six of their last eight overall games. Sophomore point guard Tyler Ulis and freshman guard Jamaal Murray have been the Wildcats’ roar this year. They average 16.7 and 18.8 points per game respectively and Murray has been shooting 42 percent from three-point land in conference play.
As a team, the Wildcats score 78 points per outing, which is the third best mark in the SEC, and shoot 47 percent from the floor. They also own a +5.9 rebounding margin so A&M’s freshman center Tyler Davis will be kept busy on the boards.
All of Kentucky’s six losses the wildcats have come away from Lexington and in those losses  the wildcats have given up 83 points per game on average.
This game pits two of the conference’s best against each other with SEC superiority at stake. A win for A&M means their conference title dreams are not yet dead. A win by Kentucky, however, and the title is all but gift-wrapped for the Wildcats.
A&M is 14-1 at home this season and Reed Arena is already sold out. Game time is set for 5:30 p.m. and will be nationally broadcast on ESPN.

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