Texas A&M women’s basketball team should be encouraged by loss to No. 1 South Carolina

The Texas A&M women’s basketball team has come a long way since their first matchup against the best team in the nation, unbeaten South Carolina.

The Lady Aggies (19-12, 6-10 SEC) were thrashed 99-64 by the No. 1 Gamecocks (31-0) on Jan. 21 at Reed Arena. Texas A&M might’ve lost 79-68 to South Carolina on Friday afternoon in the quarterfinals of the SEC Tournament but the Aggies should be encouraged by the defeat.

Texas A&M forced a season-high 24 turnovers, including 10 in the first quarter, and the Gamecocks led 16-13 after 10 minutes of action. The difference in the game came in the second period when South Carolina outscored the Aggies 17-9 and led 33-22 at halftime. After intermission, Texas A&M won the third quarter 26-24 but the Gamecocks took the fourth period 22-20 and ultimately prevailed by 11.

Senior guard Aicha Coulibaly had the best game of her career against the top team in the country. She set a new Aggies’ SEC Tournament record with a career-high 32 points on 8-of-16 field goal attempts, 3-of-4 from 3-point range and 13-of-15 from the free-throw line.

Texas A&M‘s play in the conference tourney proved that the Lady Aggies are one of the best 68 teams in the nation and deserve a spot in the NCAA Tournament on Selection Sunday, March 17 at 7 p.m. CT on ESPN.

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Story originally appeared on Aggies Wire