Feb. 6, 2010
COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) - Texas A&M had scored all of eight points in about eight minutes against No. 20 Baylor, when a frustrated Mark Turgeon dropped his job description for a bit.
"I was over-coaching," Turgeon said. "We had all of these things we were going to do against their zone, and I had our guys so messed up. I finally got out of the way, and our guys started playing better."
The Aggies, in finally making a few late 3-pointers, overcame a double-digit, first-half deficit to defeat the Bears 78-71 before 13,021 fans in Reed Arena on Saturday.
A&M (17-6, 6-3 Big 12) won its third consecutive game while denying Baylor (17-5, 4-4) its third straight win.
"Every time we went on a run," Bears coach Scott Drew said, "they would answer."
The Aggies answered from long range late Saturday, a rarity this season. They entered the game as the worst 3-point shooting team in the league, and stayed true to form by making one of their first 14 attempts.
"In the first half, I was rushing them a bit," culprit-turned-conqueror B.J. Holmes said.
Holmes, who kept launching 3-pointers despite the Aggies' long-range troubles, made three in the game's final six minutes. Each of the first two, 27 seconds apart, pulled the Aggies within one point with about five minutes remaining in the game.
The last, coming at the 1:31 mark and lifting A&M to a 72-66 lead, put away the Bears for good.
"The 3-pointers ignited them," Drew said. "If he doesn't hit those, then everything is fine."
The Aggies also have been miserable from the free-throw line this season, entering the game shooting 64.4 percent, but responded by making a season-high 28 of 33 (84.8 percent).
"Who said we couldn't make free throws?" Turgeon said, smiling.
Senior guard Donald Sloan, one of the team's best free-throw shooters, made seven of eight in the game's final three minutes.
"We put a lot of work in this week," senior forward Bryan Davis said. "We had guys coming up here late at night to shoot free throws."
Davis led A&M with 22 points; Sloan followed with 20, but Davis was most recognized for the defensive job he did on Bears forward Ekpe Udoh in the second half. Udoh scored only five of his 19 points after the break.
The surging Aggies, in excellent shape to make a fifth consecutive NCAA Tournament, snapped Missouri's 32-game home winning streak with a comeback victory there Wednesday.
"That's five out of six," Turgeon said of A&M's roll. "That's pretty good, especially in this league."
Baylor will next travel to Lincoln, Neb. to take on the Nebraska Cornhuskers, Wednesday night. Tip is set for 8 p.m. and will be nationally televised on ESPN2.