Double-doubles by Kay Kay Green, Sahara Jones and Aaliyah Patty powered the Texas A&M women’s basketball team to a 74-67 victory over the Kentucky Wildcats in Thursday’s home finale inside Reed Arena.
Green dished out a career-high 10 assists while adding 14 points for her first career double-double. Jones scored a team-high 18 points, shooting 7-of-11 from the field and 3-of-3 from the charity stripe while grabbing 11 rebounds in her second career double-double. Playing her last game on Gary Blair Court, Patty pulled down a game-high 15 rebounds to go with 12 points and four assists.
The performance marked the first time the Aggies (7-18, 2-13 SEC) had three players with double-doubles in the same game since Feb. 2, 2017, when Khaalia Hillsman, Anriel Howard and Curtyce Knox accomplished the feat at Florida.
Texas A&M’s balanced scoring attack included Janiah Barker with 16 points. Jada Malone added eight points and four rebounds.
The Aggies mauled the Wildcats (10-17, 2-13 SEC) on the boards in the second half by a margin of 23-9, including 7-2 on the offensive glass. Texas A&M outrebounded Kentucky 46-29 for the game.
Patty secured her 14th career double-double in the first half as the Aggies built a 36-30 advantage at the intermission. Patty logged 11 points on 5-of-7 shooting from the field and grabbed rebounds. Other impressive numbers in the first half included 11 points by Barker, who also hit 5-of-7 from the field, and eight assists by Green.
Kentucky tied the game early in the second quarter. The Aggies answered back with a 15-5 run, including nine points by Barker, to stake claim to a 36-26 edge at the 1:32 mark. The Wildcats made a pair of buckets in the final 1:11 to shave the deficit to six points at halftime.
The first quarter was a seesaw affair with eight lead changes, but the Aggies scored the last six points of the period to claim a 21-16 edge at the break. Patty scored nine points, including a 3-pointer at the buzzer, and grabbed five rebounds in the opening act.
A pair of layups by Malone inflated the Aggies’ cushion to 44-32 at the 6:41 mark of the third quarter. The Wildcats salted the A&M edge to 47-42 over the next 3:13. Ol’ Sarge’s charges replied with an 8-2 run to go up 55-45 at the last break.
Kentucky would close the gap to 58-52 with just shy of seven minutes left in the game, but the Aggies stretched it back out to 12 points with two jumpers by Barker that spurred an 8-2 run. The teams traded scores down the stretch with the Wildcats hitting two cosmetic 3-point field goals in the last :33 seconds for the final margin.
Texas A&M wraps up the regular season Sunday when the Maroon & White travel to Fayetteville, Arkansas, for an 11 a.m. game against the Arkansas Razorbacks.
RECORDS & SERIES NOTES
- Texas A&M advances to 7-18 in the 2022-23 regular season, including 2-13 in the SEC.
- The Aggies’ overall record against the Kentucky Wildcats betters to 9-5, including 4-3 while inside Reed Arena.
- Joni Taylor’s career record advances to 147-93 all-time and to 7-18 in her first season with the Aggies.
- Aaliyah Patty, Sahara Jones and Kay Kay Green recorded double-doubles. The last time three Aggies earned double-doubles in the same game was Khaalia Hillsman, Curtyce Knox, Anriel Howard on on Feb. 2, 2017, vs. Florida.
- Four Aggies scored in double digits for the second time this season, with the previous being on Dec. 18 against SMU.
- The Maroon & White hit 30-of-61 (49%) from the field, the third-best of the season.
- The Aggies held a 46-29 advantage over the Wildcats in rebounds, holding a 23-9 edge in the second half.
- The Maroon & White led 11-5 in fast break points. The sixth time this season they outperformed their opponent in the category.
- Texas A&M held Kentucky just below its season scoring average of 67.6 points per game, the 22nd time this season the Aggies have held their opponent below their average scoring output.
- The Aggies scored 36 points in the first half, marking their second highest first-half score of the season. The highest being 38 against A&M-Corpus Christi on Nov. 10.
- Texas A&M utilized a starting lineup of Sydney Bowles, Kay Kay Green, Sahara Jones, Jada Malone and Aaliyah Patty for the second time this season (1-1).
- Registered her second double-double of the season and her career, scoring a career-high 18 points and grabbing a career-best 11 rebounds.
- Led the team in points for the fifth time this season as she shot 7-of-11 (63.6%) from the field, marking the 10th game this year she has scored in double-digits.
- Drained a three-pointer, marking the 11th game this season she has made one-or-more from behind the arc.
- Recorded her third double-double of the season, ninth in her two years at A&M and 13th in her 132 career games as she put up 12 points and hauled in 15 boards.
- Led the Aggies in rebounds for the 15th time this season.
- Marked the ninth game she has scored in double-digits this year.
- Hit a 3-pointer, marking the 13th game this season she has made one-or-more shots from deep.
Kay Kay Green
- Put up her first career double-double of the season, scoring 14 points and dishing out a career-high 10 assists.
- Scored in double-digits for the seventh time this season.
- Led the Aggies in assists for the 13th time this season.
- Contributed two rebounds and two steals, marking the eighth game this season she has led the team in steals.
- Tacked on 16 points, the 10th time this season she has put up 10-or-more.
- Drained a three-pointer, marking the sixth game this season she has made one-or-more from behind the arc.
Head coach Joni Taylor
On what this win means moving forward…
“We talked about how we wanted to finish all week. We wanted to finish at our best. This is the last time playing in front of our fans, who have supported us all year long. The 12th Man has been absolutely great. This is McKinzie (Green) and Aaliyah’s (Patty) last time playing on this floor, so it’s always bigger than us and they took that message to heart. I’m really proud of how we continue to fight and get better and grow throughout this year.
On how much they needed this win…
“It was huge. Nobody wants to lose. It’s not fun. Growing pains hurt, but for them to be able to get another win, it feels good for everybody. I’m really happy for them.”
Junior guard Kay Kay Green
On the difference in the fourth quarter…
“The confidence that my teammates and coaches have in me. It means a lot. With them behind me, I feel like I can do anything. We haven’t been good in the fourth quarter, so I knew we really needed to close it out and that’s what we did.
Senior forward Aaliyah Patty
On finishing her career at Reed Arena with a win…
“It’s really special to be surrounded by the 12th Man and finish strong in Aggieland and Reed Arena. Being able to share this moment with my teammates, my coaches and my family is really special.”
Junior guard Sahara Jones
On tonight’s offensive production…
“I believe everybody got in the gym and made some shots today. We made some shots, and we shot those shots with confidence. When we didn’t make those shots, we had others go get the offensive rebounds, get fouled and get to the free throw line.”
Credit to 12thman.com