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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 tiger’s roar

First half shooting woes doom Aggies in 81-58 loss to No. 13 LSU
Photo by Ishika Samant
LSU Lady Tigers guard Aneesah Morrow (24) fights for the ball against Texas A&M Aggies guard Aicha Coulibaly (5) and Texas A&M Aggies forward Janiah Barker (2) during Texas A&M’s game against LSU on Friday, Feb. 19, 2024, at Reed Arena. (Ishika Samant/The Battalion)

The soundtrack to Texas A&M women’s basketball’s game against No. 13 LSU is one A&M would like to forget: dueling cheers of “L-S-U” and “Let’s go Aggies” that — boosted by a $5 beer night promotion — ended with the visitors’ roar reverberating throughout Reed Arena as the Aggies fell 81-58 to the visiting Tigers on Feb. 19.

“I thought it was great because the Aggies were quiet,” LSU coach Kim Mulkey said. “We didn’t give them much to get excited about, really. That’s what you try to do when you go on the road: Get the home crowd out of it by keeping the lead and just do what you got to do to keep them from getting excited.”

Mulkey was right, the Aggie faithful didn’t have much to celebrate in the first half. A&M shot 29% from the field in the first quarter, a mere 11% in the second quarter and entered the halftime break down 36-14.

Sophomore forward Janiah Barker blamed the Aggies’ shooting woes on the loss of graduate guard Endyia Rogers. A&M’s leader in average scoring missed her second straight game due to a knee injury suffered against Kentucky — both of which resulted in A&M losses.

“We’re still trying to figure out how to play without our point guard,” Barker said. “… In a game like this we definitely need Endyia Rogers in the game. We need her to control the game, shoot the shots she does and produce what she produces.”

The Aggies did a lot of things according to plan, coach Joni Taylor said, but weren’t able to shoot well enough to capitalize.

“A lot of the marks we wanted to hit, we hit,” Taylor said. “It was 14 turnovers or less, we hit the mark. We wanted to be within eight on the boards, we were within three and got 18 offensive rebounds … We’ve got to figure out the offensive end, that’s where we’ve got to get some things figured out.”

Things improved for A&M in the second half, as the Aggies improved their shooting percentage to 36% in the third quarter and 57% in the final period as LSU only outscored the Aggies by a point — but the hole A&M dug itself in in the first half was just too much to climb out of.

“We had to come out punching in the third quarter,” Barker said. “We just fell over. We got our butts whooped. And we didn’t want to go out like that.”

Barker’s 21 points led the Aggies but weren’t enough to top all scorers as LSU junior G Aneesah Morrow put up 25 — 19 of which came in the second half.

“She’s done that the whole year,” Mulkey said. “She’s an undersized post player that can take you off the dribble, she leaps out of the gym, she can take you and shoot it from the three. She just can finish.”

As SEC play winds down, Taylor says A&M’s shooting problems are a must-fix issue.

“We’ve got to be strong,” Taylor said. “We know we’re going to get doubled, we’re going to get tripled, we’ve got to move for each other. And when we have easy baskets, we’ve got to make them.”

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About the Contributor
Ian Curtis
Ian Curtis, Sports Reporter
Ian Curtis is a journalism freshman from College Station, Texas. Ian has written about football, men's basketball, women's basketball, baseball, hockey, gymnastics, volleyball and more for The Battalion. Ian's work has also appeared in The Bryan-College Station Eagle and over the airwaves on WTAW and 
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