Texas A&M sweeps Auburn with 83-78 home win
COLLEGE STATION, Texas (KBTX) - Texas A&M junior forward Julius Marble poured in a career-high 20 points, including three clutch buckets down the stretch, to lead the Aggies to a hard-fought 83-78 win over the Auburn Tigers in front of a crowd of 10,248 fans on Tuesday at Reed Arena.
Marble, a transfer from Michigan State, turned a two-point deficit with four minutes remaining into a four-point lead that the Aggies would not relinquish with a layup and two close-range jumpers. Marble’s clutch points rewarded a stifling Aggie defense that limited the Tigers to four points in the final four minutes of the game.
The bout between the Tigers and the Aggies saw the Tigers race to a double-digit lead in the first half and an eight-point lead in the second, but the Aggies always rose to the challenge. After falling behind by eight at the 15:36 mark, the Aggies slowly reeled in the Tigers and took a one-point advantage on Tyrece Radford’s 3-pointer at 7:42 to set up Marble’s heroics. The Aggies’ biggest lead of the game was the five-point margin of victory.
The two teams went blow-for-blow for the first half of the initial stanza with the Aggies leading 14-13 at the 10-minute mark. Auburn surged over the next four minutes with a 14-1 run that led to a 12-point Tiger bulge at 6:28. But the Aggies didn’t blink as they began chipping away at the Tiger lead, eventually taking the lead at 1:04 on an Andre Gordon 3-pointer. The Aggies finished the half on a 15-4 run that gave them a hard-fought 37-36 lead at the break.
Sophomore guard Wade Taylor IV led all scorers with 22 points as the 6-foot dynamo drained four 3-pointers and was a clutch 8-of-9 from the free throw line while dishing out seven assists. With Taylor leading the way, the Aggies, already the SEC’s free throw leaders, connected on a season-high 31 free throws on 39 attempts.
Other Aggies in double figures were Andersson Garcia with a season-high 11 points and Tyrece Radford with 10 points. Marble also led the team with seven rebounds but four other Aggies chipped in five or more boards. Freshman Solomon Washington was huge in the win as he came off the bench to contribute energy and fire, as well as six points and five rebounds.
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