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Reed Arena - College Station, TX

Strong defensive effort leads Aggies over Kansas

80 days ago
Texas A&M Athletics
Photo: Texas A&M Athletics

BRYAN-COLLEGE STATION, Texas - The Texas A&M women's basketball team turned in a stellar defensive effort to reel off their fifth consecutive win with a 63-52 triumph over the Kansas Jayhawks Sunday afternoon inside Reed Arena.

Coming off road victories against Cal and Wake Forest, the Aggies registered wins in three-straight games on their schedule against Power 5 opponents from different conferences for the first time since November 2015.

Texas A&M (7-1) held Kansas (3-4) to 30.9% (17-of-55) shooting for the game and induced 16 Jayhawk turnovers.

Janiah Barker turned in one of her most productive performances of the season for her sixth career double-double. She pulled down a career-high 13 rebounds, including seven offensive boards, and added 18 points. Endyia Rogers registered season highs with 17 points and seven rebounds to go along with three assists, two steals and a block.

Tineya Hylton proved to be invaluable in her 12 minutes off the bench. She registered six points, three rebounds, two steals and an assist.

Much like their victory against Cal, it was an overwhelming fourth quarter which proved to be the difference. The Aggies outscored Kansas 22-13 in the final stanza. Texas A&M converted on 53.8% (7-of-13) from the field and 80.0% (8-of-10) from the free throw line to pull away from the Jayhawks. Skip Ad

The Aggies' offense struggled early on, but three consecutive buckets to end the first quarter gave Texas A&M a 12-11 advantage at the break. The Maroon & White started the game hitting 2-of-14 (16.7%) from the field, but Sydney Bowles' layup at the 2:00 mark produced the first Aggie lead of the game at 9-7. In the final minute of the period Barker sank a 3-point field goal and hit a high-effort jumper.

An early foul disparity in the second quarter allowed Kansas to mount a 22-18 margin. The Maroon & White were whistled for the first five fouls of the period and a pair of free throws by Zakiyah Franklin gave the Jayhawks the four-point cushion at the 5:02 mark. Defense kept the Aggies in the fray, holding Kansas without a field goal the final 6:43 of the half. Lauren Ware made a shot from the charity stripe and hit a jumper and Barker swished a 3-pointer as Texas A&M went into the locker room up 24-22.

Rogers went on a hot streak midway through the third quarter to stretch the gap to five points. In a span of 1:29, she made a layup and sank two 3-pointers to give A&M a 36-31 edge at the 4:14 mark. Kansas eventually knotted the game at 39-39 before MJ Johnson converted a layup in the waning moments of the period, putting the Maroon & White up at the last intermission, 41-39.

After Kansas briefly tied the game early in the fourth quarter, back-to-back scoop-and-scores by Rogers and Hylton gave the Aggies a 45-41 lead. The Jayhawks' Holly Kersgieter drilled a 3-pointer the next time down the court to shave the margin to one point, but Texas A&M responded with a 12-2 run over the next five minutes, leaving Kansas in its wake. The Jayhawks made a pair of field goals to cut the gap to 57-50 at the 2:00 mark, but the Aggies made all six of their free throw attempts in the final minute to keep Kansas at bay. Skip Ad

The decisive win was a sharp contrast to last year's meeting against Kansas. A little over a year ago, the Jayhawks handed the Aggies a 74-42 loss in Lawrence.

Up Next

The Aggies will play Lamar at 11 a.m. inside Reed Arena on Wednesday, Dec. 6.

POSTGAME NOTES

RECORDS & SERIES NOTES

  • Texas A&M is now 13-8 versus Kansas all-time.
  • Joni Taylor's career record advances to 156-96 all-time and to 16-21 in her two seasons with the Aggies.

TEAM NOTES

  • The Aggies held Kansas to 30.9% shooting and 29.4% from three. This marks the sixth time the Aggie defense has held an opponent below 40% from the field this season. In those games, A&M is 6-0.
  • Texas A&M had 15 offensive rebounds leading to a season high 18 second-chance points.
  • Texas A&M began with a starting lineup of Endyia Rogers, Aicha Coulibaly, Sahara Jones, Janiah Barker and Lauren Ware. (7-1)

INDIVIDUAL NOTES

  • Janiah Barker
  • Led A&M on offense with 18 points.
  • Recorded her fourth double-double of the season with 18 points and a career high 13 rebounds.
  • Endyia Rogers
  • Put up 17 points and three assists and grabbed a season-high seven rebounds.
  • Had multiple steals for the fifth time this season with two.
  • Made three three-pointers going 3-4 (75%) from deep.
  • Lauren Ware
  • Recorded multiple blocks for the sixth time this season.
  • Tineya Hylton
  • Had a season-high two steals in 12 minutes off the bench.

POSTGAME QUOTES

Head Coach Joni Taylor

On stretching the lead in the fourth quarter...

"I think we finally were able to get multiple stops defensively and (Taiyanna) Jackson being on the bench opened things up for us. We did a really good job of pursuing the basketball. We got some offensive rebounds and had a couple of really big plays defensively. (Tineya) Hylton came in and did an amazing job of changing tempo for us defensively and offensively. I think everybody who came in stepped up and played a major role. But those are moments that really stand out in terms of getting stops and Endiya Rogers had an amazing third and fourth quarter." 

On the differences from last season to this season...

"Well, I think there's a few things, number one, our players who returned really have done a great job of working on their game, working on their mindset. They're at a different level of locking in. And then obviously, we upgraded in terms of our roster. We were able to bring in some pieces in our freshman class and our transfer class, that has helped us with some experience and obviously the talent."

Graduate Guard Endiya Rogers

On how well she shot the ball...

"I just knew I had to come out really aggressive, playing another Power 5 team. I have to play my game because they're gonna try to take everything that I do well away. But regardless, I have to play my game."

Sophomore Forward Janiah Barker

On playing well against the best teams...

"Honestly, ever since I was a kid, even in middle school, when it's time to play the best teams it's just something in me that fires me up. I'm really happy that my teammates and coaches believed in me."