Roby Leads Women’s Hoops over Auburn, 71-53
BRYAN-COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The Texas A&M women’s basketball team defeated Auburn, 71-53, behind a career performance from Sydnee Roby, Sunday afternoon inside Reed Arena for its first conference win of the season.
Roby led the Aggies (11-6, 1-4 Southeastern Conference) with a career-high 20 points while shooting 9-for-12 from the field. Kayla Wells and Jordan Nixon also contributed to the scoreboard, scoring 15 and 10 points, respectively. Aaliyah Patty recorded two blocks while registering six points and hauling in seven rebounds.
Seven different players scored for Texas A&M, shooting at 46.7% as a team while the Tigers (8-8, 0-5 SEC) went 21-for-58 (36.2%) from the field. The Aggie bench dominated the game, scoring 33 points while Auburn’s bench scored ten. The Maroon & White controlled the game physically leading in rebounding (41-29), points in the paint (38-26) and blocks (4-1). The SEC’s best 3-point shooting team went 40% from beyond the arc, draining 6-of-14 of its attempts from deep.
The first five minutes were evenly contested between the Aggies and Tigers, with Auburn leading 7-6 with 4:37 left in the period. Texas A&M bounced back and went 5-for-7 from the field in the final minutes, going into the second period leading 19-12. Bolstered by two 3-pointers from Destiny Pitts, the Aggies led 31-16 with 5:27 left in the half. Texas A&M continued its offensive attack, outscoring Auburn 16-2 in the last five minutes and afforded the Maroon & White a 44-18 lead going into halftime.
Texas A&M got off to a quick start, with Qadashah Hoppie draining a 3-pointer on the first possession of the third period. The Aggies maintained their lead, holding a 51-29 advantage with 4:25 left in the quarter. After a buzzer-beating 3-pointer from Nixon, the Maroon & White went into the final period of play with a 62-38 lead. The Aggies maintained their advantage throughout the fourth period and won the game, 71-53.
The Aggies were cheered on by over 60 former players, staff members and managers that were in attendance on Sunday night. Texas A&M Athletics hall of famers A’Quonesia Franklin, Lisa Branch, Lisa Langston and Morenike Atunrase featured those that were in attendance.
The Texas A&M women’s basketball team faces Ole Miss on Thursday, Jan. 20 at 7 p.m. inside Reed Arena.
RECORDS & SERIES NOTES
- Texas A&M improves to 11-6 overall this season and 1-4 in conference play.
- The Maroon & White is now a perfect 16-0 versus Auburn all-time.
- The Aggie bench outscored the Tigers’ second unit 33-10. This is the 10th game this season where the A&M bench outscored its opponent’s bench. The team is 7-3 in those ballgames.
- The victory marks the first win in conference play for the Aggies. The last time A&M began conference play 1-4 was during the 2007-08 season. A&M would go on to win 16-of-17 and make the Elite 8 of the NCAA Tournament.
- The Maroon & White went a perfect 9-of-9 from the charity stripe. The last time the Aggies went 100% from the free-throw line was at LSU on Feb. 16, 2017.
- The Aggies outrebounded their opponent for the 12th time this season after producing an 41-29 margin on the glass against the Tigers. The team is 11-1 in games where it wins the rebounding battle.
- The Maroon & White held Auburn to six points in the second quarter. It was the 14th single-digit quarter forced by the Aggie defense this year.
- Texas A&M utilized a starting lineup of Jordan Nixon, Qadashah Hoppie, Aaliyah Patty, Kayla Wells and Jada Malone for the second time this season (1-1).
- Sydnee Roby led the Aggies in scoring with a career-high 20 points while shooting 9-of-12 from the field.
- Roby is the fifth Aggie this season to cross the 20-point mark in a game.
- Kayla Wells has scored in double digits every game this year, after scoring 15 points against the Tigers. She has now scored 10-or-more points in 81 games throughout her career.
- Wells has played in 141 games for the Aggies, which is three games from breaking Karla Gilbert’s program record of 143.
- Jordan Nixon scored 10 points and went 2-of-4 from deep. She has scored in double figures 10 times this season.
- Nixon led the team with five assists. This is the seventh game of the year where the New York native recorded 5-or-more assists.
- Jada Malone recorded the fourth start of her career.
- Women’s Basketball Hall-of-Famer Gary Blair improves to 849-339 in his career with a 441-176 record at Texas A&M.
Head Coach Gary Blair
“It was great to see so many young people in the crowd today. It was great to see us signing autographs after the ballgame like we’ve done for years and years and years. That’s what it’s all about—we had a great crowd because we had a great reunion weekend. Our kids just said, ‘enough is enough’, it’s time to start playing Aggie ball, as Mark Edwards would say. We said rim attack [was the] first key on the board- basket rim attack instead of settling for our pretty jump shots. We can hit them, but we wanted to be able to get them in foul trouble.”
On Sydnee Roby’s performance…
“I was pleased, of course, what can you say about Roby – that’s what we want every day for them. While she’s learning, the freshmen can learn from her. [Jada] Malone has basically been outplaying [Roby] in practice and she had been in the starting lineup. But Roby needed that for confidence and Malone can see what it’s going to take for an older post to be able to score and our guards were doing a great job of finding her on a couple of roll plays.”
Junior center Sydnee Roby
On the team’s first SEC win…
“It’s definitely our first step forward, no more steps back. It’s the momentum and we just have to keep pushing forward. We have a lot of work to do, but it’s definitely a momentum builder.”
Graduate guard Kayla Wells
On defensive strategies for the game…
“We were really emphasizing taking away their right hand, their strong hand, because that’s what they do best. They weave and then they get to their right hand and they kind of turn it up. I felt like we did a really good job switching and talking. That makes all the difference.”
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