Motley 22 in Baylor's 77-63 win over Texas A&M
WACO, Texas (AP) Johnathan Motley and Rico Gathers gave Baylor a dominating presence with their scoring and rebounding while Texas A&M was shut out in a critical area.
The Aggies didn't have a single offensive rebound when the former Big 12 and Southwest Conference rivals played for the first time in three seasons.
Motley, a freshman, had 22 points with 11 rebounds and Gathers also had a double-double (13 points, 10 rebounds) to lead five Bears in double-figure scoring in a 77-63 victory Tuesday night.
''Really embarrassed about how we competed around the basket. ... They physically whipped us,'' said A&M coach Billy Kennedy, who team was outrebounded 38-17. ''Motley and Rico Gathers, I've got a lot of respect for them, but I didn't anticipate they would dominate us like they did.''
Baylor (8-1) pretty much dominated throughout after falling behind 8-1 in the first four minutes of the game, especially with Texas A&M (6-2) getting no second-chances at all even while shooting a season-high 58 percent (22 of 38).
''I was really surprised they didn't have any offensive rebounds,'' Gathers said. ''That's unheard of.''
After Motley was scoreless his previous two games, he was 9-of-16 shooting while getting all his points against the Aggies in 23 minutes.
Midway through the second half, Motley had a rebound that he converted into a putback basket. After Kenny Chery had a steal and a breakaway layup, Motley made another strong move to the basket, with a spin move to get free for a layup that made it 59-39.
''The players in the locker room were (telling him) `Welcome back,' he took (two) games off,'' coach Scott Drew said. ''He was aggressive, he had confidence and approached the game in the right way.''
Lester Medford and Taurean Prince each added 11 points, and Al Freeman 10 for the Bears.
Kourtney Roberson and Alex Robinson each had 11 points for the Aggies, who had won five in a row.
This was the 206th meeting in the Battle of the Brazos, referring to the river that touches both college towns only about 90 miles apart. It is the second-longest played rivalry for both teams behind Texas, but hadn't been played since Texas A&M left for the SEC after the 2011-12 season.
Texas A&M leads the series 127-79, but Baylor has won the last six, including the last five as Big 12 rivals.
''We wanted to let that be known that this is Baylor,'' Motley said. ''We just made a statement.''
Texas A&M: The Aggies played the first of two games in 12 days against former Big 12 foes. They play Kansas State on Dec. 20.
Baylor: The Bears are 3-0 against SEC teams this season, having also won at South Carolina and Vanderbilt. ... Baylor is 27-4 against in-state opponents since 2011-12.
Texas A&M isn't even the first NCAA Division I team this month to go without an offensive rebound. American University didn't have one against Illinois on Saturday. And in the NCAA tournament last season, Virginia went without an offensive board against Coastal Carolina. ''Rebounding-wise as a coach, you couldn't be more pleased,'' Drew said. ''Balls obviously bounced our way.''
After missing four games with a foot injury, Chery returned to the floor during the first timeout Tuesday. The point guard had seven points with two assists and three steals while playing 21 minutes. ''After the first 10 minutes, he was right back in step with things,'' Drew said.
Texas A&M is home Saturday against Youngstown State.
Baylor, after a break for final exams, hosts New Mexico St. on Dec. 17.
(Previous versions of this story had incorrect stats. Baylor revised the official box score to add two rebounds for Jonathan Motley, giving him a total of 11, and Baylor 38 as a team.)