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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 BattalionMay 4, 2024

Thursday basketball game to honor women affected by breast cancer

Photo by C. Morgan Engel

Freshman forward N’dea Jones drives the baseline against Auburn Tigers forward Abigayle Jackson during the fourth quarter at Reed Arena.

After breaking a seven-game win streak with a 70-65 overtime loss to Missouri on Feb. 7, the No. 22 Texas A&M women’s basketball team is looking to get back in the win column against LSU on Thursday.
The Aggies are 18-5 overall and 7-3 against Southeastern Conference opponents. LSU (14-8, 5-5 SEC) is coming off a 71-34 win over Arkansas last Thursday.
A&M previously lost to LSU on Jan. 6 by a score of 63-52. In that game, the Aggies turned the ball over 21 times. Head coach Gary Blair said limiting turnovers will be crucial in Thursday’s matchup.
“That cannot happen,” Blair said. “You lose when the other team has possessions — doesn’t matter what you shoot. We have to take care of the basketball better against LSU.”
The Tigers had four players score double-digit points against Arkansas. Junior forward Ayanna Mitchell led the charge with 21 points, also adding 17 rebounds. Senior guard Shanice Norton followed with 13 points, while sophomore guards Khayla Pointer and Karli Seay added 10 a piece.
Sophomore guard Chennedy Carter — who remains A&M’s leading scorer — put up 29 points against Missouri last week to become the fourth player in A&M history to have over 10 points in 30 consecutive games.
Fellow sophomore, forward N’dea Jones, had a career-high five blocks and a team-high 12 rebounds against Missouri.
The theme for Thursday’s game is BTHO Breast Cancer, and each Aggie will wear a jersey with the name of someone in their life who has been affected by cancer. Sophomore guard Jada Walton and junior guard Jasmine Williams, who both lost their mothers to breast cancer, will wear jerseys in their honor.
“Getting the opportunity to put her name on the back of my jersey for the first time ever and being able to play in a basketball game representing her with a lot of my extended family and friends coming is something special that I don’t think many players in collegiate athletics get to experience,” Williams said. “I’m just privileged and thankful to have this opportunity.”
After losing her mom in 2013, Walton said she turned to her 16-year-old brother Jarrett to find her inner strength.
“I didn’t want to be down for him,” Walton said. “I wanted to maintain positivity for him and let him know that the sky’s the limit. I’m trying to be the best image of my mom to him now.”
Blair’s jersey will have ESPN reporter Holly Rowe’s name on the back. Blair said he chose to honor Rowe because she interviewed him following A&M’s national championship win in 2011, and he admired her ability to continue working throughout her chemotherapy treatments.
“I admire her,” Blair said. “[She’s] meant so much to women’s basketball in general and to sport in general. Holly Rowe is my person, and I’ll be proud to wear that jersey on Thursday night.”
Tipoff is set for 6:30 p.m. on Thursday at Reed Arena.

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