Game #8: Texas A&M Aggies (3-3) at Colorado Buffaloes (6-1)
Sidenote: Our only loss this season has been to LSU which now has a 9-0 record and is ranked 5th in the polls. To notch their 9th win, the Tigers hosted Arizona State and ripped the Sun Devils 76-42 earlier today. Even though Arizona State had to meet them on the Tigers home court whereas we played LSU on a neutral court, our 10 point loss doesn’t look so bad now.
Thus far this season our bench has been much more productive than Texas A&M’s bench, so we need to wear down their starters.
After leading throughout most of the first half, we let the Aggies back into the game when our shooting went stone cold. Texas A&M took a 19-17 lead with 5 minutes remaining in the half. The lead flip-flopped the rest of the half. When the buzzer sounded we were on top 29-27 even though we only hit 27% of our shots. SG Kenton Dunn led our scoring with 7 points, but C Ryan Erickson scored 6 and hauled in 9 rebounds.
SF Rick Coffey tipped in a rebound and then PG Matt Conley intercepted a pass and hit C Ryan Erickson for an alley-oop throw down to put us ahead by 6 after just a minute of play in the 2nd half. We pressed and forced a 10-second violation. Erickson then pushed he way toward the basket and hit a 5 footer to put us ahead 35-27. With our fans turning up the volume and us ahead 39-32, Texas A&M called their 2nd time out of the 2nd half with 14:51 to go. This left them with just 1 remaining time out. During the time out, I instructed our players to turn up the defensive pressure to attempt to put the Aggies away. That strategy totally failed as Texas A&M tied the game at 46-46 six minutes later. Back-to-back-to back 3’s put us on top 55-48 with 5 minutes left. With 2-1/2 minutes to play, Matt Conley sunk a 3 to give us a 62-54 lead. Texas A&M was forced to foul which allowed us to expand our lead and win by a final score of 70-57. Again our shooting was a woefully poor 35% but we did hit 40% of our 3’s. But the main difference in the game was our 14-5 turnover advantage.
C Ryan Erickson had a huge game with 16 points and 13 rebounds. Vee Kurtbek came on strong in the 2nd half and finished with 11 points.
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