Texas A&M basketball capitalizes on early offensive explosion to survive late MSU run

It was scary for a bit in the second half, but the 23-point lead Texas A&M basketball built over Mississippi State was enough to handle a Bulldog run.

Mar 2, 2024; Athens, Georgia, USA; Texas A&M Aggies guard Manny Obaseki (35) takes a free throw
Mar 2, 2024; Athens, Georgia, USA; Texas A&M Aggies guard Manny Obaseki (35) takes a free throw / Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
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This was a gotta-have-it win for Texas A&M basketball, no two ways about it. There were downright frightening flashes deep in the second half for A&M, but an early explosion on the offensive end for the Ags was enough to withstand the furious run from a solid Mississippi State squad. When all was said and done, the Aggies emerged victorious by a mark of 75-69.

This was a night where the Aggies showcased an unprecedented amount of offense compared to what they had been displaying recently. This was thanks in large part to the contributions of the "others:" Manny Obaseki had 17 to lead all Aggie scorers, Solomon Washington had 15, and Andersson Garcia even poured in 9, including a made 3-pointer. Obaseki in particular shone brightly; he has figured something out since being inserted into the starting lineup against Georgia.

Wade Taylor, though quiet for most of the second half, put the game out of reach in the waning moments with a clutch bucket. Off of a missed three that was rebounded by Washington, he looped back inside the arc, down by the baseline, to toss in a little running push shot from about ten feet away.

The Bulldogs missed a quick three-point attempt after that, which was again rebounded by Solo. Though Radford would miss his ensuing layup, the Bulldogs again failed to capitalize, and Solo was sent to the foul line following his third consecutive defensive rebound. He made one-of-two, but it was enough to put the Aggies over the top.

As I said, the Aggies desperately needed this win, and the roster showed it from top to bottom. Just take a look at the effort displayed by Solomon Washington on this three point shot contest:

The Aggies travel to Ole Miss this Saturday to close out the regular season. If they win there, they will be set up more favorably for the upcoming conference tournament: a boon, since they likely need at least 2 wins in Nashville to get back on the right side of the bubble. If they can keep this kind of play up, I feel good about that prospect.

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