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Recap: Texas A&M defeats UT Rio Grande Valley 78-60

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We weren’t perfect, but we pulled away late for a comfortable win.

Feb 22, 2017; Fayetteville, AR, USA; Texas A&M Aggies guard Admon Gilder (3) dribbles in the second half as Arkansas Razorbacks guard Jaylen Barford (0) defends at Bud Walton Arena. Arkansas defeated Texas A&M 86-77. Mandatory Credit: Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

It was not an evening without moments of frustration, but Texas A&M ultimately held serve in a game that never really seemed in doubt.

Let’s break it down.

The Quickest of Starts

We shot out of the blocks to 16-0 lead, which is about as good of a start as you can hope for. Sure, it was a little rude of us to go for two on consecutive drives... but I can’t hate on the aggressiveness.

[waits for laughter to die down]

But seriously. The first half was a whitewash, and everything was going great... until foul trouble forced us to run our entire second unit at once. The bench, long a source of strength for this team, had never been asked to generate offense without a single starter on the floor, and they just didn’t have it in the first half.

The Vaqueros (great name) were able to crawl back into the game against our reserves and even cut the lead down to a dozen by halftime.

Halftime Score: Texas A&M 40, UT Rio Grande Valley 28

Rio Grande Came to Play

For the second straight cupcake game, we failed to come out of the halftime break and put the game to bed. UTRGV hung around for large stretches of the second half, even forcing a timeout from Coach Kennedy after they cut the lead to seven near the midway point.

For what it’s worth, there were moments where he looked about as frustrated as I’ve seen him look this season.

For the first dozen minutes of the second half, we couldn’t hit free throws, we were lazy on our closeouts, and we were careless with the basketball. It doesn’t seem like a stretch to suggest that this effort could have been a loss in any of our P5 games this season.

We Figured It Out. Eventually.

This played out like a carbon copy of the Pepperdine game, where the squad eventually put the clamps on defensively, hit a flurry of shots, and closed the game out. But it’s now the second straight game in a slightly disturbing trend, where the Ags have played down to inferior competition for large stretches.

Final Score: Texas A&M 78, UT Rio Grande Valley 60

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Next up is a road game against the Arizona Wildcats on Tuesday night

BTHO Arizona