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November 17, 2007

Aggies earn victory over Ouachita Baptist, 85-59

COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) -- Texas A&M freshman DeAndre Jordan broke the Big 12 record for consecutive field goals made on Saturday night.

Now if he could just make a free throw.

Bryan Davis scored 15 points and Jordan had 12 points and 10 rebounds for his first double-double to lead No. 15 Texas A&M to an 85-59 win over Ouachita.

Jordan has made 16 straight field goals over the last four games to break the previous record of 13, set by Nebraska's Mikki Moore in three games in 1998.

He missed his four free throw attempts on Saturday and made just 3 of 11 in the first three games.

"That's kind of tough for me right now but I'm working on it," he said. "I've got to get my confidence up when I go to the line."

Coach Mark Turgeon said he thinks it's a case of "stage fright" and he thought they had fixed the problem.

"We really worked hard at the foul line," Turgeon said. "I think his technique's gotten better in practice. I think eventually you are going to start seeing results."

Jordan's 13th consecutive basket was a layup to open the second half. The record-breaking shot came on an off-balance hook shot about a minute later. He was fouled on both shots, but missed the free throws.

The 7-footer gave A&M (4-0) a 47-26 lead when he made another layup on the Aggies' next possession.

Jordan hasn't missed a field goal since the first half of Texas A&M's opener against McNeese State. The prized recruit was 6-of-6 on Saturday, made his last two shots against McNeese, was 5-of-5 against Oral Roberts and 3-of-3 in a win over UTEP.

"I'm just thankful that my teammates look for me a lot and they help me get a lot of good shots," Jordan said.

He also broke the school record for consecutive shots made, 13, set by Vernon Smith in 1978. Jordan is the first freshman to record a double-double at A&M since senior Joseph Jones did it as a rookie.

Jordan has worked to improve his rebounding after being teased by coaches and teammates after getting just two rebounds in his first game.

Despite Saturday's performance, Turgeon knows Jordan has to improve to compete against tougher opponents.

"He's just got a ways to go," Turgeon said. "Our opposition is going to pick up in the next four games and I'm not sure he's ready for it. He's going to be thrown out there and maybe he'll step up his game."

The Aggies led this one from the beginning and Jordan's six quick points to open the second half put the game further out of reach.

A dunk by Jordan with 9 minutes left stretched A&M's lead to 64-39. Turgeon pulled his starters soon after that. Jordan also had a steal, an assist and a block.

Ouachita (0-1) was led by Daniel Maddox with 21 points. Coach Charlie Schaef said his team struggled with the A&M's size and that the Aggies were a tough team to play in the Tigers' first game.

"It's just hard to simulate the speed, the athleticism, the length of A&M," Schaef said. "They've got some future pros on that team. The kids have been working hard, it's just hard to simulate the game conditions."

In the first half, a missed 3-point attempt by Josh Carter bounced off the top of the backboard three times before Jordan grabbed it for a dunk that gave A&M a 20-point lead with 3:32 left. Carter finished with 12 points.

Freshman Nathan Walkup scored the first points of his collegiate career with a 3-pointer with less than a minute remaining in the first half to push A&M's lead to 41-24. Walkup finished with seven points and three rebounds.

Ouachita's Ed Keyes made a free throw to make it at 41-25 at halftime.

The Aggies travel to New York next week to play Washington in the semifinals of the NIT preseason tournament at Madison Square Garden.


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