Texas A&M-Texas Tech Preview

BY foxsports • February 11, 2011

After getting off to its best start in 91 years, Texas A&M hit a rough patch. Coach Mark Turgeon hopes a second consecutive road win keeps smoothing out the rest of the Big 12 season.

The 22nd-ranked Aggies look to win their third straight in Lubbock on Saturday when Texas Tech tries to snap a 13-game losing streak to Top 25 opponents.

After opening 17-2 - the program's best start since the 1919-20 team finished 19-0 - Texas A&M (18-5, 5-4) lost three straight before Wednesday's 73-70 overtime victory at Colorado.

B.J. Holmes hit a game-tying 3-pointer with 1.9 seconds left in regulation and the Aggies avoided their first four-game skid since the end of 2003-04.

"We were 17-2 for a reason - we have good players and a good team, and we just haven't played that way," Turgeon told the school's official website. "... Hopefully this game will help us get our confidence back."

Holmes appears to have his shooting touch back following a five-game stretch from Jan. 12-29 when he averaged 6.8 points on 34.5 percent shooting. He's scoring 17.0 points per game in his last three on 14-of-18 shooting, including 7 of 9 from 3-point range.

The senior guard even convinced Turgeon to change the play Wednesday so that he would get the shot at the end of regulation instead of leading scorer Khris Middleton.

"Coach asked me if I had another one in me," Holmes said. "I said, 'Yeah.'"

Holmes hit four 3s and scored 18 points in a 67-65 victory in Lubbock on Feb. 13 in the teams' last meeting as Texas A&M completed a season sweep.

The Aggies have won five of the last six matchups and now face a Texas Tech squad allowing a league-worst 76.1 points per game.

The Red Raiders (11-13, 3-6) trailed No. 3 Texas by as many as 21 points last Saturday and lost 76-60 after pulling within six with 11:24 left.

"We were just down too many," coach Pat Knight said. "You make a run on them, but eventually you run out of gas."

The Red Raiders, who lost 88-66 to No. 2 Kansas in their last home game Feb. 1, have not defeated a ranked team since a 99-92 overtime victory over then-No. 12 Washington on Dec. 3, 2009. They have lost their five against Top 25 teams this season by an average of 26.4 points.

If Texas Tech is going to break through in this game, it will likely need top scorers Mike Singletary and John Roberson to carry the load.

Singletary, averaging a team-best 13.8 points, had a season-low four against the Longhorns, but Turgeon and the Aggies have seen the senior forward at his best. Singletary had a career-high 43 points in an 88-83 victory over Texas A&M in the 2009 Big 12 tournament, scoring 29 in a row for the Red Raiders at one point in the second half as they overcame a 21-point deficit.

Roberson is averaging 18.4 points and shooting 53.8 percent from 3-point range over the last seven games.

Middleton, scoring 14.9 points per game, had just five in both matchups with Texas Tech in 2009-10.


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