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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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Texas A&M outfielder Jace Laviolette (17) robs a home run from Florida infielder Cade Kurland (4) in the top of the ninth inning during Texas A&M’s game against Florida at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Sunday, June 15, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
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Six-game run at stake at streaking Ole Miss

Cody+Franklin+%26%238212%3B+THE+BATTALIONJunior+Danuel+House+goes+for+the+layup+in+the+Aggies%26%238217%3B+last+win+against+Vanderbilt.

Cody Franklin — THE BATTALION

Junior Danuel House goes for the layup in the Aggies’ last win against Vanderbilt.

The six-game win streak will meet its biggest challenge Wednesday.
The Texas A&M’s men’s basketball team will meet Ole Miss at 6 p.m. Wednesday in Oxford in a matchup between two of the hottest teams in the SEC.
The Aggies (15-5, 6-2 SEC) have rattled off six consecutive victories to take sole possession of second place in the conference standings after losing to No. 1 Kentucky in double overtime in Jan. 10. Still, that hasn’t been enough to generate any breathing room for the Aggies. Six teams sit a single game back of A&M in the standings — Ole Miss is one of them.
Being the team that everyone else is chasing is a new role for the Aggies, but it’s one that junior guard Alex Caruso said the squad is embracing.
“I’d rather be the team everyone’s looking to beat than be the team that needs to beat somebody,” Caruso said. “It’s a blessing in disguise. We’re in second place, but we’re only one game away, two games away from being the eighth or ninth place team.” Ole Miss (14-7, 5-3 SEC) is also feeling the pressure to keep winning. The Rebels will be defending a streak of their own, having won their past three conference games, including most recently a 20-point blowout of Missouri last Saturday. Ole Miss is averaging 75 points a game in SEC play, the highest mark in the conference. Their prolific offense is spearheaded by guards Stefan Moody (15.4 points per game), Jarvis Summers (14.1) and LaDarius White (11.4).
“They have three true guards who can all pass, shoot and dribble,” said Aggie head coach Billy Kennedy. “Summers and Moody are averaging 14 free throws attempts a game and they’re both shooting close to 90 percent from the free throw line. We’ve got to keep them out of the paint. It’ll be a good matchup for us.”
That proficiency at the free throw line extends beyond the backcourt throughout the entire Ole Miss team, and it’s perhaps the single most impressive element of their offense. The Rebels are shooting around 80 percent from the stripe, a number that tops all other schools and would lead the NBA as it stands. A&M, on the other hand, ranks last in the SEC in the same category with a mark of 64.4 percent in conference play.
To extend their win streak to seven games, the Aggies will have to draw from their experience and recent success on the road. They’ll also look to play zone on the defensive end to eliminate one-on-one matchups with Ole Miss’ stable of talented guards and prevent Caruso and Co. from falling into foul trouble.
“This will be a game against one of the better opponents in the league,” Kennedy said. “We’re going to have our hands full against a really good perimeter team that’s playing very well.”

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