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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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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

A&M loses big at LSU without Jones at point

Cody+Franklin+%26%238212%3B+THE+BATTALIONJunior+forward+Courtney+Williams%2C+shown+above+in+Thursday%26%238217%3Bs+home+loss+to+Vanderbilt%2C+scoring+19+for+the+Aggies+in+the+17-point+road+loss+to+LSU+on+Sunday.

Cody Franklin — THE BATTALION

Junior forward Courtney Williams, shown above in Thursday’s home loss to Vanderbilt, scoring 19 for the Aggies in the 17-point road loss to LSU on Sunday.

The Texas A&M women’s basketball team concluded its regular season on a sour note Sunday, dropping its second consecutive game in an 80-63 loss at the hands of LSU.
The No. 12 Aggies, led by head coach Gary Blair, marched into the Maravich Assembly Center in Baton Rouge with one thing in mind — win and secure a bye into their conference tournament’s quarterfinals for their 10th consecutive season.
But the Aggies (22-8, 10-6), playing without point guard Jordan Jones, who is out for the season with a torn ACL, didn’t embody that urgency and committed 24 turnovers in the game.
“We were playing for a top-4 national seed, which we don’t deserve based on how we finished our last four games,” Blair said.
The Tigers (16-12, 10-6) implemented a full-court pressure defense periodically throughout the game and it gave the Aggies fits, forcing 13 turnovers in the first 13 minutes of action and preventing the Aggies from taking advantage of what was an otherwise efficient first half.
A three-minute first-half stretch saw six of seven A&M offensive possessions end in turnovers. LSU outscored A&M 13-0 during this sequence, with nine from senior guard Dashawn Harden, and broke the game open, 26-10.
Harden stole the show in the first period on senior day with 22 first-half points on perfect 5-of-5 shooting from beyond the arc. A Harden 3-pointer with nearly a minute remaining secured a 47-35 lead for the Tigers heading into the break.
Texas A&M and LSU then proceeded to exchange buckets for a large portion of the second half. The effort of junior guard Courtney Williams — who finished the game with 19 points, five assists and four rebounds — helped the Aggies stay within striking distance, but was not enough to narrow the deficit.
Harden finished with 28 points and was joined in her scoring charge by junior guard Danielle Ballard, who also reached the 20-point mark while adding seven boards.
A&M assistant coach Bob Starkey reflected on the disappointment surrounding the A&M squad following Sunday’s game.
“We’re disappointed with the way we played,” Starkey said. “The two things that stood out to me most in our play, is obviously we didn’t take care of the ball. We turned it over, that led to points and we did a very poor job of defending their dribble penetration. The second thing I would say is certainly kudos to LSU. I thought they played incredibly well. They shot the ball as well as we’ve seen them all year long. But we can only be accountable for what we can control and there was some things that we just didn’t do very well and we didn’t do them very well from the tip.”
Texas A&M now awaits the seeding for the SEC Tournament, which commences Thursday in North Little Rock, Arkansas.

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