Texas A&M Rides Strong Second Half to Win Legends Classic Over Penn State
Aggies sophomore forward Robert Williams was named tournament MVP.
After two lopsided games yesterday, Penn State (5-0) and No. 16 Texas A&M (3-0) put on a show for the few hundred fans at the Barclay’s Center during the Legends Classic title game this Tuesday night. Despite 56 points between Penn State’s Tony Carr (31) and Lamar Stevens (25), Texas A&M rode a strong second-half performance by graduate student Duane Wilson to a 98-87 win.
Heading into the contest, both Penn State and Texas A&M put their undefeated records on the table after easily beating their respective opponents yesterday. Unlike yesterday, tonight’s game proved to be a grudge match between two quality teams.
After only being up by two points at halftime, Texas A&M took over the contest with point guard Duane Wilson leading the way, scoring 20 out of his 22 points in the second half.
“You know those quick cat-like guards,” Carr stated. “He’s one of them. Wilson got into the lane, made some big plays, and helped his team. He’s a good guard.”
For a team that’s big men dominate most conversations about the team, Wilson’s veteran leadership often goes underappreciated. But tonight, the stage was Wilson’s.
“His toughness has been a big bonus to our team,” Texas A&M head coach Billy Kennedy. “His maturity and experience is something we really needed in our program, and he’s been a big lift for us.”
Along with Wilson, sophomore forward Robert Williams helped the Aggies mightily and was the most talented big man on the floor. Williams, who was named tournament MVP, flew through the air with four alley-oop dunks to help lead the Aggies to victory.
“You can throw it anywhere to that kid, and he’ll finish,” Penn State head coach Pat Chambers. “He’s a stud.”
Williams netted 23 points and snagged ten rebounds to help finish off the Nittany Lions, establishing himself yet again as a force around the rim.
“Most people don’t have rim-protectors like that,” Kennedy said about Williams. The sophomore declined the NBA draft a year ago to return to the program, giving the Aggies added depth down low, an area of the court they excel in.
Leaving the Barclay’s Center with a 4-0 record, the Aggies will head home to take on Pepperdine this Friday. Penn State, now 5-1 on the year, will head back to Pennsylvania to take on Oral Roberts this coming Friday as well.