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Win streak to be tested by UK

Published: Monday, February 18, 2013

Updated: Monday, February 18, 2013 17:02

 

No team in the SEC has come within seven points of the A&M women’s basketball team since Jan. 10 — eight teams up, eight down. On Monday, the last team to beat head coach Gary Blair’s Aggies will enter Reed Arena to put the winning streak to the test.

The No. 11 Texas A&M women’s basketball team lengthened its win streak to eight games with Thursday’s win over Florida and will face No. 7 Kentucky at 6 p.m. on Monday.

Earlier in the season, the Aggies fell to Kentucky 65-62 on its home court — the last A&M loss before the current eight-game win streak.

Blair said they have to get their attitudes right going into the Kentucky game and can’t turn the ball over under pressure.

“I’m going to focus on Kentucky,” Blair said. “But I’m going to correct some mistakes and some attitude adjustments. We’ve got to be able to take coaching better and take accountability better out there on the court because we are going to play a fired up Kentucky team who is going to try to win the SEC just like we are. We’ve got to quit turning the ball over against pressure, and that’s what Kentucky did against us.”

The Aggies are tied for first place in the SEC right now and have an imposing 10-1 conference record. With a 10-2 conference record, good for second place in the SEC, Kentucky isn’t far behind.

Since the last time the Aggies played Kentucky, senior guard Adrienne Pratcher has stepped up her game, currently ranking first in the conference in three-point field goal percentage and second in assist/turnover ratio.

Junior All-American candidate Kelsey Bone said Pratcher has improved and is playing with more confidence.

“Pratcher is what has improved since the last time we played Kentucky,” Bone said. “She is just playing with a ton of confidence and she is leading this team.”

The Wildcats have just come off of three wins — one come-from-behind victory over South Carolina after initially trailing by 16 points, and the other in overtime against Arkansas. Senior guard A’dia Mathies leads Kentucky and ranks second in the conference in scoring, averaging 18.5 points per game.

University of Kentucky head coach Matthew Mitchell said his team needs to find a better way to defend the Aggies.

“It’s a big game,” Mitchell said. “It’s two of the best teams in the country and it will be a tremendous matchup. I think it’s probably important for us to figure out a little better way to defend them. They got a lot of easy buckets in that game although we won, and they didn’t score a ton. I think we need to make them work harder to score.”

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