GAME NOTES: The Texas A&M Aggies will attempt to continue their outstanding success at Reed Arena this season, as they are set to take on the Ole Miss Rebels on Saturday afternoon in an SEC bout.
Ole Miss had been sliding with four straight losses prior to its most recent contest on Wednesday night when it got back on track with a 79-67 home triumph over Alabama. The Rebels are now 17-11 overall and 7-7 in the SEC but have been underwhelming on the road at 4-6.
Texas A&M is 16-12 on the season, with nearly all of its success coming on its home floor, as it has gone an outstanding 15-2 at Reed Arena. The Aggies had to venture away from College Station earlier in the week and suffered a 68-49 setback at the hands of LSU on Wednesday night to slip to 7-8 in league action.
The Aggies hold a 2-1 advantage in the all-time series with the Rebels, but Ole Miss won the most recent meeting on Feb. 27, 2013, 82-73 in Oxford.
The Rebels never trailed in their latest bout versus Alabama, running out to a lead as large as 17 in the second half before ultimately winning by 12. Although they were outshot from the field, 41.7 percent to 41.4 percent, they attempted 10 more field goals than their opponent thanks to a dominating edge in the rebounding battle, 42-24. Jarvis Summers knocked down 9-of-10 from the free-throw line on his way to 20 points. Martavious Newby tallied a double- double off the bench with 15 points and 10 rebounds, Marshall Henderson and Aaron Jones netted 13 and 12 points, respectively, and Anthony Perez posted nine points and eight boards.
Although Ole Miss shoots just a modest 42.3 percent from the field this season, its up-tempo style allows it to have one of the SEC's best scoring offenses (75.9 ppg). It also creates extra possessions with a +3.0 turnover margin but is oftentimes hindered by a poor scoring defense (72.0 ppg) and a -3.2 rebounding margin. Henderson nets a team-best 19.3 ppg despite his underwhelming field goal percentage (.366), as his 110 3-pointers rank third- most nationally. Summers (17.2 ppg) joins Henderson in the backcourt and has been much more efficient from the floor (.489). Jones isn't much of a scorer (6.5 ppg), but he's still a consistent force in the paint with 6.9 rpg, 2.2 bpg and 0.9 spg.
The Aggies started their latest game in fine fashion, running out to an eight- point lead less than seven minutes in, but they were ultimately no match for LSU, as they fell behind by six at the half on their way to the 19-point setback. They shot a lowly 30.8 percent from the field, including just 4-of-17 from 3-point range, and they were off the mark from the foul line as well (13- of-22). The only player to net in double figures in the loss was Jordan Green, who came off the bench to pour in 12 points. Kourtney Roberson was also solid with nine points and eight rebounds.
Texas A&M has been able to remain competitive this season thanks for the most part to its outstanding defense, which ranks second in the SEC to only Florida in points allowed per game at just 62.6. Unfortunately its offensive output has been lackluster to say the least, as it shoots just 42.6 percent from the field for 64.7 ppg. Jamal Jones is the only player in double digits on a nightly basis with 12.6 ppg, although he oftentimes hurts more than he helps with a disappointing field-goal percentage (.369). Roberson is a solid presence in the paint with 9.6 ppg and 6.8 rpg, while Alex Caruso nets 8.4 ppg and hands out 4.6 apg.
Ole Miss has the offensive talent to poke holes in Texas A&M's stout defense, but the Aggies have played so well on their home floor that they'll have the confidence down the stretch to squeak out a close one.
Game Date and Time