The #5 Ags continued their preparation for the start of the 2014-15 season with an exhibition against the NAIA champion Oklahoma City University Stars. As expected, A&M dominated the much smaller Stars, who played only one player at 6-0 or above all night. But despite the 74-51 win, A&M did not look like the #5 team in the nation, and it wasn't just because of Jordan Jones' new hairdo.
The biggest news from Saturday night was that forward Courtney Williams was not at Reed. Just before the game, examiner.com broke the bad news explaining her absence:
In a press release just issued on Nov. 8, 2014, the sad news out of Texas A&M women's basketball team is that junior guard/forward "Courtney Williams has been suspended indefinitely, beginning with tonight's exhibition against Oklahoma City, for a violation of team rules and athletic department policy." The press release was distributed by e-mail to the media at 6 p.m., just one hour before game time.
Ugh. Williams is eligible to practice during the suspension, so maybe this won't be too long. Although the Examiner's Dawn Lee Wakefield talks about the news being a "complete shock", Williams has been in trouble before: Last season she missed a couple of starts in early games. But Coach Blair had talked about Williams maturing in the offseason and being happier academically, so while not a complete shock, this is still a disappointment.
- With Williams out, the Ags started a lineup of Jada Terry, Achiri Ade, Tori Scott, Courtney Walker, and Jordan Jones.
- The front-court players exploited their size advantage. Combined, Terry (5-6), Khaalia Hillsman (3-3), Rachel Mitchell (1-1), Ade (4-5), and Tavarsha Scott Williams (2-3) shot 15/18. The Ags blocked 11 shots and outrebounded the Stars 54-42.
- Hillsman was fun to watch. Her 5 blocks in 15 minutes of play were impressive. Hope she can come close to that kind of D against taller competition.
- The front-court performance made the Ags overall shooting 46.8% look better than it did from inside Reed. The rest of the team was 14/44 from the field. Tori Scott led the Ags with 13 points on 5-11 shooting, but the other two starters, Courtney Walker (1/7) and JJ (2/7) were off from the field. Jones did have 9 assists and 4 steals.
- Some of the early shooting woes were due to the perennial problems of our offense vs a 2-3 zone. On the night, the Stars played a mix of defenses.
- The Reed Arena scoreboard operators are terrible. For long periods of the game, the stats board over Hullaballoo was not updating, and the individual stats on the sides of the main scoreboard got stuck in the first half.
- The good news defensively is that the Ags held he starts to just 25.8% shooting. The bad news is that our 3 pt D allowed them to hit 9 of 21 treys. Chelsea Jennings fouled out.
- #18 DePaul at in Chicago. This is part of the Second City version of the Maggie Dixon Classic (we've played in the NYC version before).The Ags blew the Demons out in the NCAAs last year, so they will be looking for payback. DePaul has played two exhibitions already, breaking the century mark in both.
- Friday Nov 14, 6:30 CST
- TV: none? The game is on the Big East Network, which is a Fox affiliate. It may be possible to stream it on the Fox Sports app, but I'm not sure whether it will be free or paid.
- Radio: I'm guessing WTAW or KZNE.