Feb 7, 2023; College Station, Texas, USA; Texas A&M Aggies student section chant after the win against the Auburn Tigers at Reed Arena. Mandatory Credit: Maria Lysaker-USA TODAY Sports
Surging Texas A&M seeks a dose of revenge on Arkansas
Texas A&M looks to build on its impressive home record when it gets a rematch with Arkansas on Wednesday night in Southeastern Conference play in College Station, Texas.
The Aggies are 12-1 at home and reside in second place in the SEC. Texas A&M has won its past three games since losing 81-70 at Arkansas on Jan. 31.
The Aggies (18-7, 10-2 SEC) remain unranked despite putting together their best 12-game start in SEC play. After a shaky 6-5 overall start, Texas A&M has won 12 of its past 14 games.
The most recent triumph occurred Saturday when the Aggies never trailed during a 74-62 road win over LSU.
Texas A&M put together a dominant first half and led by as many as 29. The Aggies were up 41-17 entering the break.
“We were locked into what we were doing,” Aggies coach Buzz Williams said afterward. “We knew what they were doing, and even as they began to make adjustments to their plan, our guys were sensing it. We needed to lock in and do this.”
Wade Taylor IV scored 23 points and matched his career-high of five 3-pointers for Texas A&M, which committed just seven turnovers.
Taylor leads the Aggies in scoring (15.2 points per game) and assists (4.1 per game).
Arkansas (17-8, 6-6) has been a disappointment after being ranked as high as No. 9 early in the season.
The Razorbacks were turning things around with five wins in six games before falling 70-64 at home to Mississippi State on Saturday. Arkansas trailed by nine at halftime and by 16 early in the second half during a disappointing setback.
The Razorbacks did have highly touted freshman guard Nick Smith Jr. available, and he played 17 minutes off the bench. Smith had five points on 2-of-7 shooting.
Smith has been plagued by a season-long knee issue and hadn’t played since Dec. 17. He is averaging 11.5 points in six games (four starts).
Arkansas coach Eric Musselman said some roles will change with Smith back in the mix.
“We knew that any time a player comes back there’s an adjustment for not just the player that’s been sitting out but for the other guys as well,” Musselman said after the loss. “So you know, I mean, not a lot of teams are making that adjustment this late in the year, and obviously, we are.”
Ricky Council IV leads Arkansas with a 16.9 scoring average.
Council and Davonte Davis each scored 19 points when the Razorbacks posted the wire-to-wire victory over the Aggies two weeks ago. Henry Coleman III had 18 points and matched his career-high of 15 rebounds for Texas A&M.
–Field Level Media