COLLEGE STATION, Texas – Texas A&M used a torrid shooting night, draining 52.9 percent of its shots to post a 66-54 victory over Texas A&M – Corpus Christi. Will Nelson led the way for the Islanders (1-7) with 17 points in a losing effort, while Fabyon Harris had 17 for the Aggies (8-2).
Nelson added nine rebounds in the loss, while Joy Williamson finished in double figures for the sixth straight game with 12 points. Johnathan Jordan had seven points, five rebounds and five assists as well. The Islanders snared 16 offensive rebounds and posted just 10 turnovers, but the Aggies' hot shooting was enough to allow the home squad to come away with the win.
In addition to Harris' 17, Elston Turner added 14 points on the strength of 4-for-7 shooting from the outside, while Ray Turner added 12 points on the inside. TAMU went 7-for-13 from downtown overall.
The Aggies jumped out to an 8-2 lead, but back-to-back quick buckets, the second a triple for Williamson, drew the Islanders within one at 8-7 at the 15:08 mark. From there, both teams buckled down defensively, and neither squad was able to gain much of a push with the Aggies advancing the lead to 10-9. But A&M caught fire at that point, embarking on a 10-0 run to open up a double-digit lead.
From there, the Aggies were able to counter every Islanders punch, pushing the lead to 31-19. The Islanders responded with two quick-hit baskets – one by Brandon Pye and the other by Johnathan Jordan – to cut the lead to eight and force an Aggies timeout. But A&M finished the half on an 8-2 run to enter the locker room with a 39-25 advantage. After starting 5-for-13 from the field, TAMU hit 11 of its final 17 attempts.
Out of the locker room, the home squad remained on target, hitting five of its first six shots to open the stanza with a 12-2 run for a 51-27 lead. The Aggies pushed it to 56-30 before the Islanders punched back with a Nelson bucket and a three-point play from Pye. The Islanders continued to chip away at the Aggies advantage, allowing only two Andrew Young baskets while converting at the line to cut the lead to 60-41.
The Islanders continued their pattern of locking down defensively and earning free throws on drives to the lane to get the deficit as low as 13 points at 62-49, but A&M got off the skid with a Ray Turner dunk and from then on the home squad was able to hold off the visitors for the victory.
Texas A&M - Corpus Christi returns to the Coastal Bend for a Friday night matchup against former Southland foe UTSA at 7 p.m. on Stripes Court in the American Bank Center. Tickets are available for $5, with youths under 13 admitted free with the purchase of an adult ticket. The game will also be carried live on Comcast Sports Net-Houston with Tom Dore and Tom Penders on the call.
For all the latest on Islanders Basketball, follow the team on Twitter (@IslandersMBB) and Facebook (IslandersMBB).