Smith scores 16 in Texas A&M’s rout of North Texas
COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP)—Texas A&M responded to the challenge of playing its fourth game in a week with one of its best performances of the season.
Tanisha Smith scored 16 points and No. 10 Texas A&M routed North Texas 108-49 on Tuesday night.
“Our kids came ready to play,” A&M coach Gary Blair said. “And our bench played better than it has all year.”
Damitria Buchanan scored 15 points for the Aggies (7-0), who earned their largest margin of victory of the season.
Chynna Burwell paced North Texas with 10 points.
The game was tied at 10 five minutes in, but A&M began asserting itself defensively against the overmatched Mean Green (3-7), and led 56-22 at the half.
“It’s second nature for us to play hard,” A&M guard Maryann Baker said.
The Aggies outscored North Texas 54-11 in points off turnovers, and A&M’s reserves scored as many points as North Texas overall, outscoring the Mean Green’s bench 49-22. The Aggies have won their first seven games by an average of 29 points.
“We don’t know anything but intense,” A&M forward Buchanan said. “It’s our nature to be intense, regardless of what the other team is doing.”
Texas A&M is off to its second best start in school history, trailing only last year’s 12-0 mark at the beginning of the season. The Aggies also have won 40 consecutive nonconference home games since the 2003-04 season—primarily thanks to Blair’s emphasis on defense.
“They pressed us and we couldn’t handle anything they threw at us all night,” North Texas coach Shanice Stephens said. “They’re as good as advertised, and we got completely dominated in every phase.”
A&M standout forward Danielle Adams, who entered the game averaging 16.7 points per game, hit the floor hard after drawing a charge with 14:16 remaining in the first half. She stayed down for a time after hitting her head on the floor but slowly climbed to her feet to applause. She didn’t play again in the blowout.
“She banged her head on the floor taking that charge,” Blair said. “She said at halftime that she was ready to go, but you’ve got to be sure with something like that.”
A&M guards Sydney Colson (right knee) and Sydney Carter (right thumb) also left the game with injuries.
“You hope that it’s just hyperextended,” Blair said of Colson’s injury to a knee she already had surgery on for a torn ACL prior to last season.
Blair added of Carter’s thumb injury: “She’ll be fine.”
The Aggies reached the 100-point mark with 3:38 remaining in the contest. A&M broke the 100-point barrier for the second time in a season for the first time in school history, after defeating Stephen F. Austin State 106-56 on Dec. 2.