COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- Khris Middleton, Elston Turner and Naji Hibbert scored 12 points each and Texas A&M took advantage of a poor-shooting Texas Tech team to get its first Big 12 Conference win, 67-54, on Saturday.
Texas A&M (10-6, 1-3) never trailed, and the Red Raiders couldn't overcome a tough start where they didn't make a field goal until more than 10 minutes into the game.The Aggies led by 17 at halftime and used a 10-2 run punctuated by a dunk by David Loubeau to extend the lead to 44-19 with 16 minutes remaining.The win snapped a three-game skid for the Aggies and was their fifth straight over Texas Tech (7-9, 0-4).Jaye Crockett had 19 points and eight rebounds to lead the Red Raiders, the only team in the Big 12 without a conference win.Texas Tech went on a 12-5 run late in the game with most of A&M's starters on the bench to cut the lead to 14. But the Aggies broke Tech's full court press on the next play, and Ray Turner finished with an alley-oop dunk to stretch the lead to 66-50 with less than 30 seconds remaining.Dash Harris added 11 points and seven assists for the Aggies. Turner finished with 10 points.Clark Lammert was the only other Red Raider in double-digits with 10 points. Luke Adams and DeShon Minnis chipped in seven points apiece.It wasn't the return former A&M and first-year Texas Tech coach Billy Gillispie was hoping for in his first visit to College Station as an opposing coach. Gillispie went 70-26 in three seasons at A&M before leaving to become Kentucky's coach in 2007. He guided the Aggies to the NIT in his first season and the NCAA tournament the next two years, including the round of 16 in 2007.The Red Raiders were playing without freshman Terran Petteway, who Gillispie suspended for a game for elbowing a Kansas player on Wednesday. Petteway was ejected after the incident in the first half of Tech's 81-46 loss to the 10th-ranked Jayhawks, and Gillispie announced the suspension the next day.Petteway traveled to College Station for the game, but sat in the stands.Texas Tech shot 33 percent on Saturday after shooting 31 percent against Kansas. Tech had a season-high 23 turnovers that A&M converted into 21 points.The teams combined to shoot 59 free throws, with Tech making 22 and A&M 18.The Red Raiders missed eight shots and had six turnovers before making their first basket with less than 10 minutes left in the first half. By then, they were down 16-5.Crockett had a 3-point play soon afterward, but A&M used a 9-2 run, highlighted by a 3-pointer by Hibbert, to push the lead to 25-10 about six minutes before halftime.The Aggies led 34-17 at halftime. Texas Tech shot just 21 percent before the break.