No. 12/13 Women's Basketball falls to Texas A&M, 76-65, in State Farm Lone Star Showdown
Feb. 21, 2009
COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) -- Takia Starks overcame an 0-for-6 first half to score 16 of her 18 points in the second half and lead No. 14 Texas A&M to a 76-65 win over No. 12 Texas on Saturday.
"We never give up on her ... and I know for sure she doesn't give up on herself," teammate Sydney Colson said.
Texas A&M (20-5, 8-4 Big 12) improved to 11-1 at home with its fifth consecutive win over the Longhorns (19-7, 7-5).
The Longhorns led by one before Texas A&M scored seven straight points to take a 42-36 lead with about 13 minutes to play. Starks scored five points in the run.
A layup by Kristen Nash about a minute later got Texas within five, but Starks hit her second 3-pointer of the half to push the lead to 47-39 and the Aggies cruised to the win.
Starks said an improvement on defense helped get the offense going.
"Our defense always gives us a chance to execute on offense," Starks said. "When you make defensive stops that gives you momentum and gives you more confidence."
Starks wasn't the only one who shot poorly early, with the entire team struggling in the first 10 minutes and trailing by as many as seven before halftime.
Texas coach Gail Goestenkors knew it was a bad sign that the Longhorns trailed at halftime despite holding Starks to two points.
"She's going to get hers," Goestenkors said. "She's such a good player."
Texas A&M's Danielle Gant collided headfirst with Ashleigh Fontenette with about 14 minutes left and remained on the court for several minutes. She eventually walked off on her own power while holding her head.
She did not return and finished with 12 points and 11 rebounds. Texas A&M coach Gary Blair said he hadn't received an update on her condition and wasn't sure if she would be available for Monday's game against No. 2 Oklahoma.
"Don't know yet," he said. "She's a tough kid. We'll just have to wait and see."
It was a frustrating day for Goestenkors, who screamed: "Get tough ladies," to her team after Cortijo was called for a pair of a fouls just seconds apart midway through the second half.
The Aggies, however, scored six straight points in the next minute to push their lead to 53-41. The Longhorns had three turnovers in that span and a season-high 29 overall.
"We had some really senseless turnovers, trying to force things that weren't there," Goestenkors said. "You just can't have that many turnovers in the game."
Hall of Fame coach Jody Conradt, who retired from UT after winning her 900th career game, watched from her courtside seat. Dressed smartly in a burnt orange turtleneck and an orange, navy and white striped blazer, Conradt saw her successor fail to beat the Aggies.
Tanisha Smith added 11 points for the Aggies and Colson and Adaora Elonu had 10 apiece.
The Longhorns had built a 17-10 lead midway through the first half as the Aggies struggled, making just four of their first 19 shots.
Texas A&M shook off their early game woes and went on a 14-6 run to take a 24-23 lead about 2 1/2 minutes before halftime.
The Aggies led 31-27 at halftime.