The Texas A&M University-Kingsville (AMK) Javelinas came out Nov. 19 against the Hilltoppers of St. Edwards University and from the tip there was a different feel from previous games.
The aggressive Javelinas went on to claim a 60-52 win to improve to 2-1 for the season as they prepared for the Holiday Inn Emerald Beach Tournament during Thanksgiving weekend.
With commanding ball movement and penetration into the lane the Javalinas outscored the Hilltoppers, 28-15, in the paint and from the perimeter the Hogs finished with a better shooting percentage, at 37.5% overall, and 48 rebounds to the Hilltoppers 42.
With a six-foot, 10-inch center, in Harley Nussman, towering over the Javelinas big men, whose tallest player, Daymon Warren, came in at six feet eight inches.
The Hogs managed to outplay the Hilltoppers under the basket and dominated the Hilltoppers throughout the night.
AMK pushed the ball through the Hilltoppers full court press all night with ease and also outscored the Hilltoppers on fast break points off the bench. Rashad Basey came off the bench leading the Hogs with 14 points off the bench, all 14 coming in the second half.
Through the first half the Hogs seemed to move through every defensive attempt the Hilltoppers used.
At the half the Hogs led the Hilltoppers 28-15 heading into the locker room.
Coming back onto the court after half the Hogs came out with a little less fire and stayed stagnant in the score column until mid-way through the third when they took off with a jolt of scoring from Marshall Bonds III and Ryan Mughmaw who both got into early foul trouble and were limited in minutes in the first half but got a few more in the second, both also fished with 11 points.
With a near scare at the end of the game with St. Edward’s Tyler Foster drained a three-point basket to make it 54-51 with 2:13 left, AMK buckled down on defense and the Hilltoppers would not get any closer.