No. 8 Texas A&amp,M 79, Rutgers 50

Texas A&M coach Gary Blair believes Danielle Adams has been

flying under the college basketball radar because of where she

plays.

The 6-foot-1 senior got a chance to showcase her skills on one

the game’s biggest stages Sunday, scoring 24 points and grabbing 12

rebounds to lead No. 8 Texas A&M to a 79-50 victory over

Rutgers in the Maggie Dixon Classic.

”It’s an honor for me to get to play in Madison Square Garden,

and to be in New York for my first time,” Adams said.

Adams came in averaging almost 22 points and over eight rebounds

a game, had 18 points and eight rebounds at the half.

”Danielle Adams is definitely one of the top 10 players in this

country,” Blair said. ”I just hope people recognize it. She’s

been under the radar since she played in junior college.”

Texas A&M led 38-20 at halftime and was never really

challenged.

Sydney Carter added 18 points and Tyra White had 15 of her 17 in

the second half for the Aggies (9-1).

Erica Wheeler scored 13 points for Rutgers (7-5) and April Sykes

had 10.

Texas A&M, which came in outscoring its opponents by an

average of over 25 points, held Rutgers to 27 percent shooting and

just five first-half field goals.

Rutgers took a 5-4 lead 5 minutes into the game thanks to two

jumpers from Nikki Speed. The rest of the team was 0 for 11 from

the floor at that point, and it was the Scarlet Knight’s only

lead.

Speed went to the bench with two early fouls and Texas A&M

went on an 11-2 run, capped by a layup and free throw from

Adams.

”There is no question in my mind that (Texas A&M) is a

Final Four team,” said Rutgers coach C. Vivian Stringer. ”We let

them think that, ‘Yeah, OK, yeah you are how good you think you

are.”’

Rutgers was just 5 of 33 from the floor in the half and 13 of 49

for the game. They had 27 turnovers.

”I think we gave them pretty good trouble,” Carter said.

”That’s what we try to be is aggressive on defense.”

The Scarlet Knights’ Khadijah Rushdan hobbled off the court in

the second half with what appeared to be a left knee injury. She

came back later in the half with the knee wrapped and limping

noticeably.

Stringer said Rushdan will have some tests done.

”I’m going to pray that it’s not (bad),” Stringer said.

”Because she’s had surgery twice on that knee. She missed her

freshman year.”

This was Rutgers’ third game against a ranked opponent this

season. The Scarlet Knights lost to No. 3 Stanford 63-50 and beat

No. 20 Georgetown 70-53.

The tournament is in its fifth year of honoring Maggie Dixon,

the former Army coach who died of a congenital heart ailment in

2006 at the age of 28. Her death came just weeks after leading Army

to its first NCAA tournament.

Her brother, Pittsburgh men’s coach Jamie Dixon, is amazed by

the growth of the event.

”Our goal was to make this the premier women’s basketball

event, and to bring awareness to the issue of heart health, and by

filling up Madison Square Garden, I think we’ve done that,” he

said.

A portion of the proceeds from the classic will go to benefit

C.A.R.E. – an organization that works to fund research and raise

awareness of sudden cardiac death.