Texas A&M 85, Texas Tech 63
COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP)—Antoine Wright scored 29 points, Joseph Jones had 16 in the second half and Texas A&M used a late 31-6 run to beat Texas Tech 85-63 on Saturday.
Texas A&M (18-7, 7-7 Big 12) led 52-51 before outscoring Tech 19-2 over the next seven minutes capped by Wright’s putback layup with 6:20 remaining.
The record A&M crowd of 13,136 taunted Tech coach Bobby Knight throughout the timeout that followed. Knight was so upset that he spent the timeout jawing with the officials.
The win is Texas A&M’s first over Tech in five tries and its third victory in a row.
Texas Tech (17-8, 9-5) led by one at halftime and neither team got ahead by more than a basket until Chris Walker’s 3 with 13:30 left put the Aggies ahead 50-47. A basket by Martin Zeno just seconds later cut the lead back to one before a bucket by Wright started the run.
Wright hit six 3-pointers in the first half. He made his seventh 3-pointer of the night during the run, but the inside play of Jones sparked the Aggies offense during that stretch.
The 6-foot-9 freshman, who was scoreless in the first half, had 14 points in the game’s final 12 minutes and put an exclamation point on his performance with a two-handed dunk that drew a foul with 1:53 left.
In the last few seconds of the game, the raucous crowd encouraged Wright to stay at A&M next season instead of entering the NBA draft, chanting “one more year.”
Texas Tech didn’t score a field goal for an eight minute span late in the second half. The Red Raiders were led by Zeno with 16 points and Jarrius Jackson with 14.
The A&M defense, led by Wright, stifled the Red Raiders’ usually potent offense in the second half. Entering the game, Texas Tech was averaging a Big 12-best 80.7 points per game.
Wright kept the Aggies in it early, scoring 14 of A&M’s first 17 points. He went into halftime with 22 points, including his sixth 3 of the half to give A&M a 34-32 lead. He was 7-of-8 from 3-point range and his seven 3s ties a record for most in a Big 12 game this season.
Jackson answered with a 3-pointer of his own on the next possession, backpedaling down the court with his shooting hand still in the air.
Led by coach Billy Gillispie, the Aggies have had a basketball renaissance at a school known more for its football team and numerous traditions. With the win, he tied F.D. Steger (1912-15) and Shelby Metcalf (1963-64) for the best start for a first year coach at Texas A&M.