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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 prepare for Auburn matchup

Vanessa Peña — THE BATTALION
Junior Jalen Jones said the A&M teamwork he has seen gives him high hopes for the game against Auburn Tuesday.
Vanessa Peña — THE BATTALION Junior Jalen Jones said the A&M teamwork he has seen gives him high hopes for the game against Auburn Tuesday.

A four-game winning streak has nudged the Aggies into shouting range of the top 25. That won’t last if they can’t continue their recent winning streak.
After receiving two votes in the AP poll Monday, the Texas A&M men’s basketball team heads to Auburn, Ala., for an SEC matchup with the Auburn Tigers at 8 p.m. Tuesday.
“We’re back on the road again and going into a hostile place at Auburn,” head coach Billy Kennedy said. “They’re a team that has played really well the last couple of games. They present us with a lot of problems with their guard play and one of the better big [men] in the [conference]. Our guys are confident and hopefully we can continue to get better, which we’re going to have to do in this game.”
The Aggies (13-5, 4-2 SEC) started 0-2 in conference play with losses to Alabama and Kentucky, but have not dropped a game since. Junior forward Jalen Jones said he believes things are turning around because everyone is buying in and playing their part on the team. “I just think we’re all clicking,” Jones said. “Everybody’s locked in to what we are doing. We’re playing off one another and we trust in the coaches and the scouting report. I think everybody knows their role right now. The people off the bench bring energy to help the starters out and the starters are doing a great job of producing.”
The previous contest between the Tigers and Aggies ended with Auburn taking a 69-64 win in College Station on the last day of conference play. Texas A&M owns the all-time series with Auburn 5-3.
The Tigers (10-9, 2-4 SEC) are led by the scoring duo of guard KT Harrell and forward Cinmeon Bowers. Senior guard Jordan Green said Auburn has talented players, just like every team in the SEC.
“They have an aggressive scorer in [Harrell],” Green said. “They have a big man in Bowers, who goes out and is real active. I know they have a talented team. Every SEC team is talented. It’s all about, on that day, who’s going to play hard and who’s going to follow the scouting report.”
Harrell leads the team in scoring and ranks second in the SEC with 17.4 points per game. Against Alabama, Harrell scored a team-high 22 points and is averaging almost 23 points per game in his last three contests.
Bowers has been finding success in the post this season, averaging a double double with 13.5 points and 11.4 rebounds per game. So far this season, LSU’s Jordan Mickey is the only other player in the SEC to average double figures in points and rebounds.
In the previous matchup for the Tigers, they fell to the Alabama Crimson Tide 57-55 in Tuscaloosa. With four seconds remaining in the game, Alabama guard Rodney Cooper scored the game-winning layup to give Auburn its third loss in the last four games.
The next time the Aggies hit the hardwood, they’ll return home for a matchup against the Vanderbilt Commodores at 3:30 p.m. Saturday in Reed Arena.

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