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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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Women’s hoops hopes to continue winning ways against Georgia

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Photo by Photo by Cassie Stricker

Chennedy Carter was 3-for-7 in free throws.

Texas A&M head coach Gary Blair treated himself to dinner at Madden’s after defeating No. 6 Tennessee Thursday night in an overtime thriller, but while he enjoyed his crab cakes, his mind was already focused on the next game since the SEC is no cakewalk.
On tap Sunday afternoon is Georgia, who comes to College Station tied with the Aggies in league play.
“We talked for three minutes about Tennessee to congratulate them and then we were onto Georgia,” Blair said of celebrating the team’s big win. “You don’t have time to look back. You look back, you’ll get passed on the way out of the dressing room by the team you’re playing.”
Beating the Bulldogs would be big in bolstering their SEC record, as the Aggies are currently in a six-way tie for second place. Blair said a win is pivotal to keep pace with league leader Mississippi State.
“What we’ve got to do is worry about A&M, but you never want who’s leading this league to have a two-game or three-game swing and try to play catch up,” Blair said. “I don’t think there’s enough losses for the top teams in this league, so what we’ve got to do is hold court.”
While the Aggies held court against Tennessee’s stud center Mercedes Russell, they will be challenged again down low versus Georgia’s Caliya Robinson, who is coming of a 21-point performance. The Bulldog forward also leads the league in blocks with 56, and Blair said she is likely the most athletic post player the Aggies will face.
“Robinson is a pure shot blocker,” Blair said. “She gets up and is as athletic as any post player in our league. She runs the floor, she shoots the three, and we’re going to have to be ready to get out on her because she’ll fill it up.”
A&M will counter with a powerful post of its own, Khaalia Hillsman, who has scored at least 20 points in the last three games. Blair said his senior center has adjusted well each game. Against Tennessee, Hillsman scored 12 of her 21 points off six offensive rebounds.
“Khaalia is scoring within the offense depending on the makeup,” Blair said. “When we played Auburn, they were a pressing team and so when we broke the press, she was on the receiving end down low … Against Tennessee, she was going against [Mercedes Russell] and was doing a great job on the offensive boards.”
While the Aggies had their starters each play over 40 minutes against Tennessee, Blair said his second team has gotten more work ahead of Georgia to prepare for the Bulldogs’ aggressive pace of play.
“They attack you offensively and defensively,” Blair said. “They’re not going to sit back in a 2-3 zone and play ‘Hope they miss’ defense. They’re going to come get you.”
The Aggies and Bulldogs tip off at 2 p.m. from Reed Arena. The game will be televised on SEC Network.

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