STARKVILLE, Miss. – The No. 16 Texas A&M women’s basketball team was unable to outlast the No. 8 Mississippi State Bulldogs, falling 69-57 at Humphrey Coliseum Sunday afternoon. The Aggies put together a strong first half, taking a double-digit lead into the break, but Mississippi State came on strong in the second half to earn the victory. Junior guard Kayla Wells and junior forward N'dea Jones led the way with 16 points apiece.
After a hot start, turnovers plagued the Aggies (18-5, 6-4 SEC) through the first quarter, which slowed production until Wells came on strong late in the period. Wells got A&M back within one, 12-11, by the end of the first quarter and her hot hand carried the team’s momentum into the second quarter.
Wells made it 14 first-half points, as the Aggies used a 12-2 run near the midway point in the quarter to go up double figures and position itself for a 37-26 halftime lead. A&M outscored the Bulldogs 26-14 in the second quarter.
A late scoring drought allowed Mississippi State to get back within two possession in the third quarter, but A&M held on to the lead, 49-43, heading into the final period.
The Bulldogs scored the first nine points of the fourth quarter to regain the lead and never looked back. They extended their lead the rest of the way, never letting A&M get back within striking distance.
Three A&M starters played the full 40 minutes against the Bulldogs, while N’dea Jones was 37 seconds shy of the 40-minute mark as she fouled out in the final minute.
Texas A&M used a starting lineup of Aaliyah Wilson, Shambria Washington, Kayla Wells, N’dea Jones and Ciera Johnson for the seventh time this season.
Junior guard Kayla Wells put up 14 of her points in the first half, finishing with 16 for her seventh straight game in double figures.
Junior forward N’dea Jones remains the only player in the SEC to record a double-double in every conference game as she made it 11 straight with 16 points and 15 rebounds.
Junior guard Aaliyah Wilson made it back-to-back games scoring in double figures for the first time this season finishing with 12 points.
Senior guard Shambria Washington recorded her 12th game of the season with five-or-more assists in a game, dishing out five against Mississippi State.
Texas A&M will return home on Thursday, Feb. 13, as it hosts Vanderbilt for its annual BTHO Breast Cancer game at 8 p.m.