COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- Donald Sloan likes what he sees from Texas A&M's rugged defense.
"We just fed off of our defense," said Sloan, who scored 21 points to lead the Aggies (No. 18 ESPN/USA Today, No. 16 AP) to a 75-65 victory over North Texas on Monday night. "If we get stops we're all right. If we don't -- that's when we get in trouble."
Eric Tramiel scored 17 points to lead the Mean Green (5-3), who lost their second in a row.
The Aggies trailed 17-14 with 11:43 remaining in the first half before outscoring North Texas 26-4 over the next 10 minutes. In that span, the Aggies forced seven of the Mean Green's 14 turnovers in the game.
"They started putting more pressure on us and we let that affect us," Tramiel said. "We let their toughness bother us, and we can't do that on the road."
North Texas was 4 of 16 from 3-point range, but the Aggies weren't much better with 5 3-pointers in 14 attempts.
Added North Texas coach Johnny Jones: "When you're playing against a tough team like that, you can't make those types of mistakes. It was a big uphill battle for us [after that]."
The Aggies entered the game shooting 64.1 percent from the free-throw line, but were 20 of 24 (83.3 percent) against the Mean Green.
"We have a few slip-ups now and then, but we shoot free throws pretty well," Sloan said. "Even if the numbers don't really show that right now."
A&M has won 48 consecutive nonconference home games. The Aggies next play New Mexico in the Toyota Center, home of the NBA's Houston Rockets, on Saturday.
Aggies coach Mark Turgeon said he was pleased with how his team has held up while playing six games over 12 days.
"I thought we had a little fatigue out there," Turgeon said. "I was a little concerned about this stretch. We have a long way to go, but to be 8-1 following the stretch we've played -- it's a good start."
Jones added that he was impressed with A&M's toughness -- especially defensively.
"They're ranked, and rightfully so," Jones said. "They're a senior, experienced team and they played that way tonight. They step up and make plays when they need to, and that's what experience will do for you."
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