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

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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No. 12 A&M beats LSU 68-54 for fourth straight win

The No. 12 Texas A&M women’s basketball team changed its wardrobe on Thursday night, opting to wear snazzy pink jerseys with the players’ nicknames on the back instead of the traditional maroon and white.
Even with the pink jerseys the Aggies (19-7, 9-4) were far from perfect, but that didn’t stop them from extending their winning streak to four games, defeating LSU 68-54 on BTHO Breast Cancer night at Reed Arena.
“I like the way that we could win and stay ahead of the game and not be at our best,” A&M head coach Gary Blair said in the postgame press conference.
All three of A&M’s season scoring leaders reach double-digits, with Courtney Williams leading the way with a game-high 17 points while Courtney Walker and Chelsea Jennings pitched in 14 and 13 points, respectively.
“You’re at Courtney Walker’s and Courtney Williams’ mercy on that wing,” LSU head coach Nikki Fargas said. “I’ll be glad when those two graduate, those are two very explosive players in the full court and you don’t want to allow them to get going because they can literally put the team on their back and change the complexion of the game, which they did.”
Jordan Jones, back for her first game action since suffering a head injury against Tennessee on February 7, scored seven points and dished out nine assists.
The Aggies took a commanding 34-24 lead into the intermission, but the Tigers (8-18, 2-11) made the decision in the second half to slow the pace of the game down considerably. They made an effort to not shoot the ball until there was 15 seconds or less remaining on the shot clock, which limited the number of possessions each team got in the third quarter and allowed LSU to get back into the game.
“The pace of the game, especially in the first half, was definitely in A&M’s favor. They’re a very good running team,” Fargas said. “We wanted to really slow the game down and slow that pace down a little bit and be a little bit more deliberate in the play action we wanted to run.”
The Aggies outrebounded the Tigers 40-26 on the night, and that advantage went a long way to deciding the outcome of the game.
“A&M did such a great job on the offensive glass,” Fargas said. “Their ability to rebound the basketball is really impressive to me.”
Williams, who has returned to her stellar self in the past few games, said that while the Aggies are feeling confident after four straight wins, they know they have more tough tests waiting ahead.
“We’re very confident but we can’t get too big-headed,” Williams said. “I haven’t won at Vanderbilt since I’ve been here so I know that’s a tough road game so we have to be as focused as ever.”
It was a close game throughout the contest, but the Aggies displayed their dominance late. They went on a crucial 13-4 run late in the fourth quarter that put the game on ice. Some of that can be attributed to A&M’s defensive tactics, as Blair dialed up a mixture of man-to-man and zone defense as well as a full-court press throughout the game.
“We didn’t turn them over with our press, but we tired them out,” Blair said. “[LSU} has a short bench and so we were able to wear them out by putting the pressure on them.”
In other Thursday night SEC action, Mississippi State got whipped by Kentucky, putting the Aggies all by themselves in second place in the conference standings.
The Aggies will play again on Sunday at Vanderbilt, where Blair has not won in his entire A&M career. Tip-off is scheduled for 4 p.m. and will be broadcasted on SEC Network.

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