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

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

The Battalion

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Aggies improve undefeated home record against Hartford

After a hard fought, defensive matchup, the Texas A&M men’s basketball team prevailed over the Hartford Hawks 58-49 to improve their home record to 7-0 for the season in Reed Arena Saturday evening.
Aggie head coach Billy Kennedy said that it was an ugly game but that he was glad to see his team show toughness and poise when the opponent got on a run.
“When [Hartford] cut the score to three, we showed enough poise to score and made the plays we needed to win,” Kennedy said. “College basketball this year has been crazy. A lot of teams have beaten teams in situations like this. We never really broke when we had a lead. We made some free throws at the end. We needed that [game] to give ourselves a good opportunity to go against a good Alabama team.”
A&M (9-3) came out of the gates strong against the Hawks (7-7), going on a 12-2 run and converting 4-for-4 in free throws. Hartford wouldn’t be shut down so easily, however, as the Hawks went on an 11-0 run capped off by a three-pointer by Hawks guard Tyler Dyson.
Despite committing seven first half turnovers and shooting only 31 percent from the field, the Aggies never lost their lead. A&M’s scrappy defense created eight turnovers and forced Hartford to shoot 28 percent from the field, helping the Aggies maintain their lead in the first half. Texas A&M entered the break with a 23-17 lead over the Hawks.
In the second half, A&M came out on an 11-5 run, which started with back-to-back fast break dunks by senior guard Jordan Green. Green said that he was proud that his team stayed focused and kept their poise so they could to take home the win.
“We could improve on some things,” Green said. “But a win is a win and I’m proud of our guys. We fought through it, we stayed poised. There are a lot of things that I’m proud of and there are a lot of things that we could work on. But overall, I’m happy it’s a win.”
Aggie junior guard Alex Caruso continued to stuff the stat sheet, but did it with only scoring two points. Caruso — who is the SEC leader in assists — was all over the court Saturday. He dished out 10 assists, pulled down eight rebounds and stole the ball five times.
Hartford — who is ranked top five in three-point defense — prevented the Aggies from making a shot from beyond the three-point line. The Aggies are ranked third in the SEC in three-point percentage.
Hawks coach John Gallagher said that he made it a point of emphasis to take three-point shooting out of the game.
“We were top five in the country in field goal percentage from three-point land and we lost our way against Notre Dame,” Gallagher said. “To come into [Reed Arena] and not let them make a three was a good sign for us.”
The last time the Aggies didn’t make a three-point shot in a game was on November 30, 2011 against Alcorn State.
A&M takes to the hardwood next in Tuscaloosa, AL, where they will face Alabama on Tuesday.

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