COLLEGE STATION, Texas — RECORDS & SERIES NOTES
· Texas A&M defeated Central Arkansas, 85-59, Wednesday night inside Reed Arena.
· A&M climbed to 11-2 overall, matching its start to the 2017-18 Sweet 16 season.
· The Maroon & White finished the non-conference portion of its schedule undefeated for the second-straight year.
· In three seasons under Buzz Williams, A&M is 19-2 in non-conference home games.
· The Aggies were victorious in their first meeting with Central Arkansas.
· A&M utilized an 18-0 run beginning at the 8:45 mark of the first half to take a 31-26 lead.
· A dunk by Aaron Cash with 8:29 remaining sparked a 23-2 Aggie run resulting in a 77-55 lead.
· The Aggies forced 23 turnovers and allowed only six.
· A&M’s six turnovers on offense were the fewest turnovers allowed this season.
· Texas A&M amassed 34 points off turnovers to Central Arkansas’ three.
· The Maroon & White outrebounded Central Arkansas, 36-29. A&M is 7-0 when it wins the rebounding battle.
· In paint scoring, A&M ran up a 46-14 margin.
· A&M outscored the Bears, 16-6, in fast break opportunities.
· The Aggies used the starting lineup of Marcus Williams, Ethan Henderson, Andre Gordon, Tyrece Radford and Manny Obaseki for the first time this season (1-0).
· Quenton Jackson finished as the game-high scorer and set a new career high with 31.
· Jackson is the first Texas A&M player to score 30 in a game since Danuel House had 32 against Kentucky on Mar. 15, 2016 in the SEC Tournament Championship.
· Jackson tied his rebounding career high with seven.
· Aaron Cash finished as the game-high rebounder with eight. Cash tied his career-best in assists with two.
· Marcus Williams led the Aggie offense with eight assists, a new season high. Williams also tied his season highs in scoring (16) and steals (four).
· Tyrece Radford met his season high in steals with three.
Texas A&M opens SEC play on the road Tuesday against Georgia at Stegeman Coliseum at 6 p.m.
TEXAS A&M QUOTES
Head Coach Buzz Williams
“It was the best defensive rebounding percentage game that we have had. That is very encouraging. We got the rebound on 79% of their shots, and that is critical for our team. We allowed a season low in turnovers with only six. That is critical for our team. It is imperative that we get a shot every possession, and high turnover rates prevent shots. On the other end of the floor, if they get a shot, and they only get one, that prevents extra shots and free throw attempts for them. From that perspective, it was a fabulous game. There are still a lot of things that we have to work on with an inexperienced team, and we have to do it together. But, the most important thing going forward, other than those stats, is whether or not we can play with a high level of energy, a high level of care and a high level of discipline. I thought we were really good from that regard in the second half, and too up-and-down in the first half.”
On Quenton Jackson’s leadership…
“Q is a magnet, and a magnet can be both a blessing and a curse. I told that to him around Christmas during his first year here, and I don’t know that he necessarily understood it. But, he completely understands it now. Just because you’re older doesn’t mean you are a leader. Just because you know the words to say doesn’t mean you are a leader. Your words and your actions have to match up. Even if you don’t use a lot of words, but your actions are the example needed relative to energy, maturity and discipline, then you become an example to follow. With an inexperienced team, we need more examples. When there is a player-led team, you have a chance to be good, and I thought Q was very good in that regard tonight. His performance was very encouraging.”
Fifth-year guard Quenton Jackson
On his career performance and expectations going forward…
“I just try to go out there and play with as much energy as I can. It just so happens that I was able to finish with 31 points tonight, which is cool. It’s cool, but I am more focused on what is coming when we get to conference play. I think our main problem is that we need to play with the same energy 100% of the time. We have points in the game where we just die down and get comfortable. I think we just need to figure out a way to play all 40 minutes.”
Junior forward Aaron Cash
On the spark provided by offensive rebounding…
“Being an energy guy on the team, offensive rebounding changes things a lot. I do my best to go out and get those things that people do not usually want to go get. Plays like that make a big difference in the game. I am really excited to get started with SEC play. As a JUCO player coming in, there are a lot of people that might look down on you. That puts a chip on my shoulder heading into conference play.”