COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) Josh Nebo matched his a career high with 21 points, Savion Flagg added 15 points and 10 rebounds and Texas A&M had its best shooting performance of the season in an 87-75 victory over Mississippi State on Saturday.
Wendell Mitchell scored all 20 of his points in the second half for Texas A&M (14-12, 8-6 in Southeastern Conference), which collected its second NET top 50 win of the week. Quenton Jackson added 18 points and Emanuel Miller had 10.
The Aggies shot 59.6% (31 of 52) from the field, besting their previous high mark of 56% in the season opener against Northwestern State. It was the best shooting performance for the Aggies since a 61% performance against Penn State on Nov. 21, 2017.
Tyson Carter made five 3-pointers and scored 19 points to lead Mississippi State (17-10, 8-6). Robert Woodard II added 18 points, Reggie Perry had 14 and Nick Weatherspoon finished with 11.
The Aggies closed the first half on a 14-8 surge and led 36-30 at halftime. Mississippi State pulled to 46-44 with about 15 minutes remaining, but a 19-6 run pushed the Aggies to a game-high 14-point lead with 8:08 to play.
Four consecutive 3-pointers by Carter pulled the Bulldogs to 68-62 with five minutes left but they didn’t get closer.
Texas A&M Men’s Basketball Postgame Notes
Texas A&M 87, Mississippi State 75
Reed Arena (College Station, Texas)
RECORDS & SERIES NOTES
- Texas A&M defeated Mississippi State, 87-75, Saturday at Reed Arena to move to 14-12 (8-6 SEC) on the season.
- The Aggies are now tied at 7-7 all-time against the Bulldogs.
- The Maroon & White have won four of their last five against MSU in College Station.
- The Aggies recorded season highs in points (87), field goals made (31), field goal percentage (59.6%), three-point percentage (52.9%), free throw percentage (88.9%) and assists (18). It was the highest shooting percentage in a game since November 21, 2017, in which the Aggies shot 61.1% against Penn State.
- At the 5:50 mark of the first half, the Aggies went on an 11-0 run that elapsed 4:14, to regain the lead and hold it for the rest of the game.
- Texas A&M had five players score in double digits for the third time this season.
- In the second half, the Maroon & White posted a season-high in points (51), field goal percentage (60%) and three-point percentage (70%) in a half.
- Texas A&M used the starting lineup combination of Savion Flagg, Wendell Mitchell, Emanuel Miller, Quenton Jackson and Josh Nebo for the 2nd time this season (2-0).
- Josh Nebo led the Aggies in scoring with 21, matching the highest point total he has had at Texas A&M. Nebo’s double-digit effort notched his fourth consecutive game with more than 12 points. The Houston native made a season-high eight field goals.
- Wendell Mitchell put up 20 points, and has scored 10-or-more points in seven of his last eight games.
- Savion Flagg tallied his first double-double of the season and eighth of his career. The junior matched a season-high 10 rebounds to lead the Aggies on the boards. Flagg added 15 points to register his 13th game this season with 10-or-more points.
- Quenton Jackson recorded his third consecutive game in double digits with 18. Jackson also matched a season-high four steals.
- Emanuel Miller scored 10 points, marking his seventh game with 10-or-more points this season.
- Buzz Williams is 14-12 in his first season at Texas A&M and 267-167 in his 13 seasons as a head coach.
The Aggies remain at home to take on Kentucky on Tuesday at 6 p.m.
Texas A&M Quotes
Head Coach Buzz Williams
On the team’s ability to play well together…
“I think it’s fairly evident, whether you follow our team or not, if you watch us on TV occasionally or if by chance, you’re able to come to a game, I think it’s very evident that they love one another. I think that they are beginning to care about the exact same things. So, there is momentum that comes when there’s a mass group all going in the same direction. Even if we’re wrong, we need to be strong while being wrong. I think you can feel the love and care going in the same direction, and I don’t believe that to be quantifiable.”
On seeing the team building to this point of the season…
“I just think when you’re in a tornado, you’re not able to forecast. We have a laundry list of things that we need to accomplish each day, so you spend your energy, your emotion and your time trying to accomplish the things on the list for that day. I think there has been some consistency over the last eight or nine weeks in how we approach our work. I think there’s been a crescendo in the comprehension level in the things we’re asking them to do on both ends of the floor. I think we’ve tried to remove as much as possible, whether that’s the playbook or whether that’s overwhelming them with information on the opponent, so that we can be held accountable to the things that matter the most.”
On next Tuesday’s matchup with Kentucky…
“We’re just thankful. The next game, and who it is, and where it is, after all that we’ve been through, that’s why I’m so pitiful up here after a game. My brain is just playing ping-pong. I think our guys are exhausted because they’re absolutely giving everything they have, not just physically but mentally and emotionally. To be thinking ‘Oh, here comes Big Blue Nation and Coach Cal [John Calipari] and he’s the best,’ none of those words are going on amongst our team, our staff or our players. We’re just grateful to have the chance to see what our work has been able to do. There’s a level of excitement that’s like, ‘Ok good, we get to try again.'”
Senior guard Wendell Mitchell
On the team’s recent offensive output…
“I feel like we’re just figuring everything out and everything is coming together. We are understanding each other and understanding that when we get the ball to [Josh] Nebo and Eman [Emanuel Miller] it makes the game a lot easier. Those two draw double teams and put our opponent into rotations. Once we get the opponent into rotation, we become hard to guard.”
Senior forward Josh Nebo
On the team’s confidence going into the stretch…
“Our confidence is pretty high right now. We just won three games in a row. But, it’s important to keep it in perspective, just knowing that we still have four games to go in the regular season. We have the conference tournament up ahead, so we have a lot of work still to do. We’re confident in what we’re doing right now but we still know what’s ahead.”
Mississippi State Quotes
Head Coach Ben Howland
“I thought that Texas A&M played very well today against us, especially when you look at the offense. They shot 60%. For a team that was struggling to score earlier in the year, it’s really disappointing for us from a defensive perspective. All five of their starters were in double figures. I thought [Josh] Nebo was terrific for them tonight. When you look at the second half, [Wendell] Mitchell comes in and scores 20 in the second half. Turnovers were a big problem for us. Really, that’s the story of the game, and we are very disappointed. I give great respect to Buzz for what a great job he does and how this team [Texas A&M] has developed from the beginning of the year to where they are now. They’re a problem for everybody.”
On Texas A&M’s performance…
“Give them credit. I thought they played terrific. [Savion] Flagg was really good as well. He’s a stabilizing guy that’s just solid. He just does a tremendous job for them. I think he scored 23 and 21 on us last year in the two games we played them. That starting five is very good and very tough, so give them credit.”
Story courtesy of Texas A&M Athletics