Halftime: Texas A&M 32, Purdue 25

SPOKANE, Wash. -- It's all about defense with Texas A&M and Purdue, and the Aggies won the first half of a slug fest 32-25.

Both teams are shooting below 35 percent at the break.

Some thoughts.

  • Rebounding was seen by both coaches as a key to the game, in large part because the Aggies are a lot better at it. That held true in the first half, with Purdue getting outrebounded 23-18.

  • While neither team is shooting well from the field, A&M is hot from 3-point range. It's 5 for 10 from behind the arc, compared to 3 for 9 for Purdue. Naji Hibbert and Donald Sloan both have hit a pair of treys.

  • Stat of the half, which Purdue coach Matt Painter might grumble about: The Boilermakers have yet to shoot a free throw. Texas A&M is 9 of 14 from the line. Purdue has been whistled for 12 fouls, A&M six.

  • Sloan, who leads the Aggies with 18 points per game, scored just 10 in Texas A&M's 69-53 win over Utah State, which ranked fourth on the team. He has eight points and two assists at the break.

  • Purdue's E'Twaun Moore leads all scorers with 11 points, just one fewer than he had in the first round win over Siena.

  • Chris Kramer and JaJuan Johnson both have two fouls for Purdue. They're not in trouble, but it's worth watching because both are critical presences for the Boilermakers.