Texas A&M Aggies guard Dexter Dennis (0) celebrates after an NCAA college basketball game against Missouri in College Station, Texas, Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2023. (Logan Hannigan-Downs/College Station Eagle via AP)

Texas A&M Men’s Hoops Defeats Arkansas

The Texas A&M Aggies continued their hot streak on Wednesday with another SEC win against the Arkansas Razorbacks. The Aggies have now won 13 of their last 15 and advance to 11-2.

With the win, Texas A&M moves closer to the top of the conference with a chance to be regular season SEC champions.

Razorbacks Run the First Half

Both teams started slow out of the gate, with just 14 total points being scored in the first 10 minutes of the half. From there, however, Arkansas took over. Once the scoring started to pick up, the Razorbacks jumped out over the Aggies. They managed to build a lead that got as large as 12 towards the end of the first half.

As the game approached halftime, the Razorbacks rode a 7-0 run that put a lot of distance between Arkansas and the Aggies.

However, as the half came to a close, Texas A&M’s Hayden Hefner drilled a three-pointer to reduce the lead to just nine. The Hefner basket was the first points for the Aggies in over three minutes, but was an excellent indication of what was to come in the second half.

https://twitter.com/aggiembk/status/1626056398508290048

Texas A&M Climbs Back

The Aggies picked up in the second half right where they left off at the end of the first. Texas A&M opened the second with a 17-4 run which flipped a 33-21 deficit into a 38-37 lead, its first since the game started 2-0.

Both teams battled back-and-forth for much of the half. Arkansas appeared to have the upper hand as the Razorbacks continuously found themselves leading. However, each time Arkansas built a lead, Texas A&M battled back, thanks to Wade Taylor IV’s game leading 18 points.

Finally, with just under four minutes to play, the Aggies took a 55-53 lead, and never looked back.

The Razorbacks failed the score for more than five minutes down the stretch, which allowed the Aggies to run away with the game. Texas A&M came out on top, 62-56.

https://twitter.com/SEC/status/1626082603026481154

Despite Taylor’s 18 and a double-double effort from Dexter Dennis, Texas A&M struggled from the field. The Aggies shot just over 35% on the day but were helped out by free throws. Texas A&M went 18-for-22 from the charity stripe compared to a meager 7-for-14 from Arkansas.

Aggies Move Within One Game of Alabama

With its 11th SEC win of the year, Texas A&M moves within grabbing distance of the current SEC leaders, No. 1 Alabama. The top-ranked Crimson Tide dropped their contest against No. 10 Tennessee on Wednesday, which allowed the Aggies to move within a single game. With just a couple games to go, Texas A&M has the regular season title in its sights.

With a regular season finale clash set between Alabama and Texas A&M, the Aggies can clinch at least a share of the SEC regular season title if they win as many games as the Crimson Tide does ahead of that March 4 matchup. If Texas A&M can gain another game on Alabama ahead of the regular season finale, then the contest in College Station will decide the regular season title and the No. 1 seed in the SEC Tournament.

Looking at the national picture, heading into Tuesday ESPN’s Joe Lunardi had Texas A&M as a No. 10 seed, but with an opportunity to pick up some other resume building wins down the stretch and a shot at the SEC regular season title, the Aggies could see a big rise before March. On the other hand, Arkansas was listed as a No. 9 seed.

About Matt Quartararo

Matt is a fourth-year journalism major specializing in sports media and is also completing a sports management certificate. Starting in the Fall 2023 semester, Matt has served as a sports coordinator with WRUF. He also participates in sports broadcasting, providing play-by-play for a variety of Gators sports.

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