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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 win in largest attendance of the season

After Texas A&M started on a 13-0 run in the opening five minutes, they never looked back as they defeated Vanderbilt 69-58 Saturday in Reed Arena.
Vanderbilt (11-10, 1-7 SEC) struggled early, shooting 2-for-11 with 11:43 left in the first half. The Commodores woes continued as they finished the opening 20 minutes 9-for-25, while the Aggies (15-5, 6-2 SEC) shot 15-for-26 from the field.
Aggie Head Coach Billy Kennedy was pleased with the team’s performance on both sides of the ball in the first half.
“Really, I thought the first half we played about as well as we could play in a lot of areas,” Kennedy said. “Offensively, we shared the ball. Defensively, they only scored nine or 12 points in the first 14 minutes of the game.”
Vanderbilt opened the second half strong on an 8-1 run to bring it within single digits at 40-31, but an Alex Caruso 3-pointer and a Jalen Jones dunk shifted the momentum back in A&M’s favor.
The Aggies had four players in double figures, led by juniors Alex Caruso and Jalen Jones, who led the pack with 15 points. Caruso, a guard, scored 14 points and grabbed eight rebounds, while also dishing out 10 assists. He also had four steals.
It looked like the Aggies put the Commodores away after junior guard Danuel House was fouled on a made 3-pointer, which he eventually converted for a four-point play. However, the Commodores stayed within reach for the majority of the second half.
After the game, the Aggies officially stood alone as second in the SEC, behind Kentucky. In their support was the 12th man, which was rocking at nearly full capacity in Reed Arena. The attendance of 12,722 was the largest since A&M hosted Texas in 2011.
“It’s really big” Caruso said. “We got off to a fast start because we had energy. We had people yelling for us. It’s just that little spark that you need… it’s great to see everybody coming out and supporting us, I hope they come back we’re going to keep winning for them and keep playing hard for them.”
Since taking a 23-21 lead in the first half at Tennessee on Jan. 24, A&M hasn’t trailed at any point in a game. A&M will attempt to keep their spark alive as they’ll look to get their seventh straight conference win at 6 p.m. Wednesday at Ole Miss.
“The energy, the buzz, you know we’re winning games,” Kennedy said. “We had a great crowd. Our guys appreciate that. We value the people who come to our games. Our guys have played in games where we didn’t have crowds, so we’ve got to know the group is embracing the opportunity. If we continue to get better, there will be more great crowds. I’m just thinking our guys are hungry, they’re thankful, and I want to keep it that way.”

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