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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 Battalion May 4, 2024

Flagg scores season-high as Aggies advance in SEC Tournament

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Photo by Annie Lui

Sophomore Savion Flagg was the highest scorer for the game.

Texas A&M forward Savion Flagg recorded a season-high 29 points in a winning effort over Vanderbilt at the opening round of the SEC tournament in Nashville Wednesday night, 69-52.
The Aggies (14-17, 6-12 SEC) rallied behind the dominant performance from the sophomore over the bottom-seeded Commodores (9-23, 0-18 SEC) despite a report from the Houston Chronicle stating that A&M head coach Billy Kennedy will not return as head coach next season.
“They’ve been great,” Kennedy said regarding the team’s response to the report. “It’s an unfortunate situation and life is unfortunate sometimes and you’ve got to be able to push through and that’s what we’ve been doing all year. I’m very proud of this team.”
A&M struck first with a bucket from senior forward Christian Mekowulu in the paint on the first possession of the game followed by a mid-range jumper from Flagg to make it a two-possession contest early. After a fast break dunk from Vanderbilt guard Saben Lee, A&M started running away with the game.
The Aggies extended its lead to double digits halfway through the first period with a two-point basket from junior forward Josh Nebo to make it 19-9. By halftime the Commodores were trailing 34-19 with Flagg scoring half of A&M’s points in the opening period.
Vanderbilt’s deficit would only begin to grow in the first minutes after the intermission with a pair of baskets from Flagg and a transition layup from sophomore guard Jay Jay Chandler to make it 41-24 with 15:32 left in the game.
The Commodores traded baskets but could not cut the deficit as the second half continued, allowing A&M to take its first 20-point lead at the 10:28 mark after a putback dunk from Nebo.
However Vanderbilt would go on a scoring run with 9:17 left to cut the lead back down to 10 in an attempt to get the game back in control, but couldn’t hang on after two back-to-back layups from Chandler and junior guard Wendell Mitchell.
A&M finished shooting 54 percent from the field on the night with Vanderbilt hitting only 37 percent of its shots. The Commodores found little success beyond the arc, going 3-of-24 while the Aggies shot 6-of-13.
According to Flagg former A&M guard Acie Law gave him some words of wisdom before the start of the game.
“Its helped me a lot,” Flagg said. “Just be more aggressive, not to score but to make the right play, look for my teammates and getting in the lane and creating [plays].”
Chandler and Nebo supported the A&M win with double digit scoring nights putting up 13 and 11 points, respectively.
Lee led the Commodores in its final game of the season with 19 points, with junior forward Yanni Wetzell following with 10 points and 10 rebounds.
The Aggies advance to the second round of the SEC tournament to face Mississippi State on Thursday. Tipoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. and will be televised on SEC Network.

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