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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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The Battalion May 4, 2024

A&M women’s basketball dominates offensively through unity

Courtesy of Craig Bisacre/Texas A&M Athletics

Center Ciera Johnson led the Aggies with 16 points against Lamar.

No. 12 Texas A&M women’s basketball utilized unity to dominate Lamar for the second time this season.
Although the Aggies were supposed to take on Texas Southern in their first home game since the season opener, the maroon and white ended up facing off against Lamar on Wednesday, Dec. 2, due to COVID-19 developments within the Texas Southern program.
A&M coach Gary Blair said the Aggies’ camaraderie is off the charts.
“It’s excellent,” Blair said. “Togetherness off the floor, togetherness on the floor. I mean, these kids really like each other.”
Although the first quarter was close, it was a dominant offensive performance for the Aggies. By the end of the first quarter, A&M was up 19-13.
Senior point guard Aaliyah Wilson put up six points outside of the paint in the first quarter. The Muskogee, Oklahoma native continued her offensive strength throughout the matchup. By the end of the game Wilson had scored 14 points, with 10 being rebounds.
The second quarter was where the maroon and white found a rhythm. By the end of the quarter, A&M had increased its lead to 38-31. A standout for the Aggies at this point in the matchup was senior forward N’dea Jones. Once again the 6-foot-2 player took some free throws for the maroon and white, making three out of the four she shot this quarter.
Lamar junior point guard Angel Hastings dominated on the court for the Cardinals. Hastings led both teams with 18 points. Not only did she command the statsheet, she was also very vocal in leading her team, whether she was on the court or the bench.
With Hastings playing the same position Lamar coach A’Quonesia “Aqua” Franklin used to play in Reed Arena, Franklin said she sees herself in the young point-guard.
“She loves playing basketball and you can see it in her play and how passionate she is,” Franklin said. “I definitely see a little bit more of a me and her and if I’m being honest she can shoot it better than I ever could.”
The gap was further increased during the third quarter, with the Aggies taking a 23-point lead over Lamar’s 43 points. The Cardinals fought for a comeback in the final quarter, but were unable to deliver, with A&M capturing the victory 80-63.
A&M junior center Ella Tofaeono said Blair got onto his team about its attitude on the bench.
“Our last game here at home Coach Blair made an emphasis,” Tofaeono said. “He went back and watched the game film and he just didn’t think we were hyperactive or as enthusiastic. And the bench is a big part to playing in the game. Everybody has a role and everybody has a part to play and energy whether you’re on or off the court. So we’ve definitely focused on that.”
A&M now has a 3-0 record and is undefeated going into its next game.
The next match for the Aggies is the SEC/Big 12 Challenge against rival Texas on Sunday, Dec. 6 in the Frank Erwin Center, with tip off at 7:30 p.m. The game will be televised on ESPN.

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