Photo by Rey Romo, TexAgs
Texas A&M Women's Basketball

No. 19 Aggies outshine Gators in a big road win, 80-62

February 25, 2019

The No. 21 Texas A&M women’s basketball team (21-6, 10-4 SEC) is well on its way to success in the NCAA tournament. Coming off of one of their strongest performances in SEC play against Tennessee, the Aggies kept their momentum rolling into Monday night’s game against the Florida Gators (6-21, 2-12 SEC) at Exactech Arena.

The Aggies came out with explosive energy that carried them through the entirety of the first half. The Gators’ notoriously productive attack from beyond-the-arc posed a strong threat, but within the first few minutes, Texas A&M was beating Florida at their own game.

Florida’s struggle to make up for their inaccurate three-point shooting was evident, as it took nearly 19 minutes for the Gators to make a single two-point basket. They ended the first half with just 17 points on the scoreboard, but a three-pointer by Emanuely de Oliveira with just one second remaining in the half ignited a fire in the team that contested A&M in the third period.

The Gators currently rank second in the SEC in three-pointers made and in the nation’s top-25 for three-point attempts, and it was blatantly evident following the break.

Elisa Schmitt, TexAgs
The Aggies produced an explosive start which set the tone for the rest of the match. Florida attempted a comeback but A&M continued with a lights-out offensive performance.

A halftime pep-talk by second-year head coach Cameron Newbauer spurred the Gators to shoot 83.3% from deep and score 28 points in the third quarter alone. The Aggies’ sophomore-led team was able to combat their sudden burst of energy, but A&M assistant coach Bob Starkey was hoping for a more complete game.

“That first five minutes of the second half is going to bother me until we get home tonight,” Starkey said. “An average to good team would come out and be complacent in the second half, but we’re looking to become a great team.”

Despite the defensive third quarter slump, the Aggies continued to put up numbers that outshined Florida in almost all facets of the game. Texas A&M shot 56.4% from the field, 40% from deep, and 70.6% from the charity stripe. They also outscored the Gators 40-16 in the paint and out-rebounded Florida 44-24.

Kayla Wells was instrumental in solidifying A&M’s fifth consecutive win over the Gators, as she led the team with 24 points. Chennedy Carter and Ciera Johnson were close behind with 21 points, a new career-high for Johnson. She reached her eighth double-double of the season with the addition of ten rebounds.

Funda Nakkasoglu, the SEC’s leader in three-pointers made, led the Gators with 22 points, including 18 from behind the arc. However, Florida’s 41.9% overall three-point shooting wasn’t enough to overcome the Aggies’ vigorous defensive performance.

With Monday’s win, the Aggies are just one win away from guaranteeing a berth into the SEC Quarterfinals. Texas A&M will take its final road trip of the regular season on Thursday, February 28th to take on No. 11 Kentucky with a 6 pm tipoff.

“It’s a very big game coming up,” said sophomore center Ciera Johnson. “We’ve already beaten them once, so they’re really going to look to attack us.” 

Mac Resource Computers for their sponsorship of all women's basketball content produced throughout the season at! For the seventh consecutive year, all WBB content will be available to you for free!

Discussion from...

No. 19 Aggies outshine Gators in a big road win, 80-62

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Florida in all sports are tough at home. I would argue the Aggie women were tougher, more athletic, and frankly better. They ran the risk of letting the Gators back in a couple of times. But closes it pretty much perfectly. Great win!
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Gators are not good. No inside game kills them as they have 2 good outside shooters.
Glad we were ready and put them away early, and then pulled away again after their 3rd qtr run.

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