Abdul Ado scored a career-high 19 points and grabbed nine rebounds, a performance that was punctuated by a pair of dunks in the final minutes, as Mississippi State dispatched Texas A&M 93-81 on Tuesday in Southeastern Conference action at Reed Arena in College Station, Texas.
The win was just Mississippi State’s second on the road in nine attempts this season and allowed the Bulldogs (20-8, 8-7 SEC) to become the second league team to 20 wins.
Quinndary Weatherspoon added 17 points for the Bulldogs, with Lamar Peters hitting for 15, Aric Holman pouring in 13 points, and Tyson Carter scoring 10 points. Mississippi State dominated the game even though it was outshot by the Aggies 50.8 percent to 45.6 percent.
The Aggies’ Tyler Davis led all players with 25 points and 11 rebounds. T.J. Starks added 19 points, Robert Williams tallied 11 points, and D.J Hogg and Admon Gilder scored 10 points each for Texas A&M (17-11, 6-9). The Aggies dropped their third straight game after posting four consecutive wins.
Texas A&M, once ranked in the Top 10 this season, will have to finish well in the next two weeks to avoid falling into among the dreaded No. 11-14 seeds in the upcoming SEC tournament, which would mean an extra game.
Starks’ 3-pointer with four seconds to play in the first half brought Texas A&M within 41-39 heading to halftime. The Aggies led early on by as many as four points before trailing by 11 after a 16-4 run by Mississippi State over a 2:27 span in the middle of the period.
The Bulldogs led at the half despite bring outshoot by A&M 56 percent-43.2 percent, thanks mostly to a 20-16 edge on the glass and a 20-3 advantage in bench scoring.
Davis paced all scorers over the first 20 minutes with 11 points while Ado’s and Stapleton’s eight points led Mississippi State.
The Bulldogs nearly mirrored their first-half run with a 12-2 surge midway through the second half that staked them to a 68-56 lead.
Both teams have three regular-season conference games remaining. Next up for the Bulldogs is a Saturday afternoon home contest against South Carolina. Texas A&M heads to Nashville to play Vanderbilt, also on Saturday afternoon.
—Field Level Media