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DALLAS (AP) — When the NCAA brackets came out, Texas A&M coach Gary Blair knew his team would have to get past top-seeded Baylor to get to the Final Four for the first time.
Well, when it mattered most, the Aggies finally beat Baylor and 6-foot-8 All-American Brittney Griner.
After eight consecutive losses to its Big 12 rivals, including the previous three this season, Sydney Carter got Texas A&M off to a fast start and went on to score 22 points in a 58-46 victory over the top-seeded Bears in the Dallas Regional final.
“This was a very special game,” Blair said. “We didn’t ask to play Baylor, we asked to be recognized for what we accomplished during the year. They chose to put us in the same region. ... Both of us could have been in the Final Four, both of us should have been in the Final Four.”
Baylor and Griner will have to settle for the Big 12 regular season and tournament trophies.
the still-young Bears (34-3) already won this season.
The Aggies (31-5) blew a nine-point lead midway through the second half in Waco last month. They squandered a 12-0 start in the Big 12 championship game just more than three weeks ago, two days before the brackets were unveiled with the conference’s top two teams being the top two seeds in the same bracket.
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