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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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Texas A&M outfielder Jace Laviolette (17) robs a home run from Florida infielder Cade Kurland (4) in the top of the ninth inning during Texas A&M’s game against Florida at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Sunday, June 15, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
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June 16, 2024

Aggies look to grab second win against Arkansas

Junior+center+Tyler+Davis+led+the+Aggies+with+14+rebounds.
Photo by Photo by Abby Collida

Junior center Tyler Davis led the Aggies with 14 rebounds.

 After winning four straight games, the No. 21 A&M men’s basketball team (17-9, 6-7 SEC) was gelling and looked to be the high caliber team that many thought they would be prior to the season. Led by point guard T.J. Starks, the Aggies had notched an average of 82.2 points per game in that win streak.

However, the Aggies then traveled to Missouri on Tuesday and lost 62-58. The maroon and white struggled to get anything going offensively and finished the game shooting just 39 percent (24-of-62) from the field and 21 percent from behind the arc (5-of-23).

A concern for the Aggies was their inability to get center Tyler Davis the ball in the paint. Davis finished the game with five points (2-of-2) the mere two shot attempts was his lowest all season. Davis attributed the low production to the fact that the Tigers had him double-teamed.

“If they hard double me and I can’t get a shot at the basket it’s my job to find open guys and get them open shots. Shots weren’t falling for us all night but I know they usually do so we’re all good,” Davis said.

The Aggies will look to get back to winning ways on Saturday against Arkansas who they defeated 80-66 in their first matchup. Davis had great success in that game notching 15 points on 50 percent (6-of-12) shooting and 13 rebounds. Other big men D.J. Hogg and Robert Williams tacked on 11 and 10 points, respectively. Despite their previous success, head coach Billy Kennedy says this game will be much tougher due to the atmosphere at Arkansas’ Bud Walton Arena.

“Their fans are rabid, it’s the only show in town, it seems like, when you go there. It’s a lot of enthusiasm, it’s a packed house and it seems like they’re right on you the whole game,” Kennedy said.

The Aggie guards will enter Walton Arena after playing long minutes on Tuesday. Admon Gilder played a season-high 38 minutes on Tuesday and D.J, Hogg played 34.

The guards had to play extensive minutes because of the absence of J.J. Caldwell (team dismissal), Duane Wilson (season-ending injury) and Jay Jay Chandler (suspension). Kennedy said that the lack of consistency in his team’s play was a resultant of an inconsistency of the personnel available each game. Kennedy announced on Friday that Jay Jay Chandler would return to the lineup after he was suspended ‘indefinitely’ on Sunday evening.

“The lack of consistency has been not having all our guys and not having Duane [Wilson] now is an adjustment for our bench,” Kennedy said. “That’s been the biggest thing, just getting some consistency in knowing who we have. We have that now and now we’ve got to gain some experience in doing it throughout the process.”

Despite the one game at a time approach that Kennedy and his team have taken all year, the head coach recognizes that it’s getting down to crunch time. The middle of the pack in the SEC is extremely tight with six times holding between five and seven conference wins.

“It’s that time of the year where every game is big and we’re competing against everyone in our league because the race is really tight. Beating a team twice is obviously a benefit when it comes time for Selection Sunday.

The Aggies will tip off against Arkansas at 3 p.m and the game will be televised on ESPN.
 

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