Space lifts Aggies past Vols, again, 68-65


COLLEGE STATION, Texas (release) -- For the second time this season Texas A&M's Antwan Space hit a game-winning 3-point field goal in the final seconds to beat Tennessee as the Aggies handed the Vols a 68-65 overtime defeat on Saturday afternoon. Space -- who had made just seven 3-pointers all season prior to Saturday -- hit one of those 3-pointer to beat the Vols on Jan. 11, in Knoxville, as time expired.

The Vols dropped to 16-11 overall and 7-7 in the SEC. The Aggies evened their conference record also at 7-7 and are also 16-11 overall. Texas A&M is now 15-2 in home games, winning its lone road game at Tennessee.

The Vols' Jarnell Stokes sent the game to overtime as he converted a lay-up with 0:00.8 left in regulation and was fouled by Alex Caruso that tied the game at 59. He processed to miss the and-1 free throw, sending the game to overtime.

The Vols also appeared to have hit a game-winning 3-pointer by Antonio Barton with seconds remaining, but the Tennessee bench had called timeout, nullifying the basket. The game clock was reset to 2.4 seconds setting the stage for Stokes' winning play

The Aggies swept the season series, winning in dramatic fashion in Knoxville on Jan. 11, 57-56, on a last-second 3-pointer.

Jordan McRae led Tennesee with 20 points for his 24th game this season in double-figures.

Tennessee had a pair of double-doubles for the third time this season.

Jarnell Stokes continued his monster play late in the season as he had 16 points and 16 rebounds for his SEC-leading 16 double-double this season. Stokes 12 of his points in the first half and didn't make a field goal in the second half until the final seconds.

Jeronne Maymon had his third double-double of the season with 16 points and 13 rebounds. He has combined with Stokes for the Vols three games this season with a pair of double-doubles in the same game.

Josh Richardson added 11 points for the Vols as only five players scored for Tennessee. Texas A&M outscored the Vols, 21-2 in bench points.

Texas A&M was led by Jamal Jones, who had 14 and Alex Caruso, who had 14 points before fouling out on the final play of regulation. Fabyon Harris 13 and Kourtney Roberson added 10.

In overtime, the teams traded leads for the first four minutes. Jordan Green hit a jumper with 42.4 left in the extra session to put the Aggies up 65-63.

Antonio Barton -- who had not scored all game -- knocked down two free throws with 15.5 seconds left to tie the game at 65.
That set the stage for Space to be the hero once again in the final seconds.

The largest lead for the game's first 36:40 was six points, by Texas A&M.

The Aggies took an eight-point lead -- the largest of the game -- on a pair of free throws by Harris with 3:20 left in the game, 57-49.
Tennessee battled to stay close in the final minutes, but the Vols didn't make a field goal for a span of more than four minutes before Josh Richardson had a steal and emphatic slam dunk with 1:20 left in the game. That brought the Vols within four at 57-53.
After a pair of A&M free throws, Maymon stuffed home a basket to keep the margin at four points, 59-55 with one minute left.
Stokes scored his first points of the second half on a pair of free throws with 25.6 seconds left in regulation, to cut it to 59-57. Stokes tied the game with eight-tenths of a second left in regulation to tie the game at 59.

Caruso took a fast break and slammed it home to put the Aggies up 49-43 with 7:39 on the clock, but McRae responded with a 3-pointer to bring the margin back to three.

A&M took a 45-41 lead with an 11-4 spur midway through the second half as Antwan Space -- who hit the game-winner in the first meeting -- made his first trey of the game.

The game was last tied at 39 on a Josh Richardson' jumper with 12:18 left in regulation.

The Vols rallied to lead, at the half, 27-24. Three players combined for nearly all of Tennessee's key statistics in the first half. Stokes (12) and McRae (8) had 20 of the Vols 27 points. Stokes (10) and Maymon (9) had 19 of the team's 22 rebounds.

The first half started very sluggish for both teams, a total of 15 points were scored in the first 10 minutes as the Aggies held a 9-6 lead midway though the period.

Down by as many as five, the Vols scored the final seven points in the last three minutes of the first to take the halftime lead.

The Vols continue their two-game road stretch at Mississippi State on Wednesday night. That 8 p.m.. tip-off airs on SEC TV and can be heard on the Vol Network from Starkville.


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