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Texas A&M and Iowa State are looking for bounce-back wins when they battle for third place in the ESPN Events Invitational Sunday in Kissimmee, Fla.

The 12th-ranked Aggies (5-1) are coming off their first loss of the season, falling 96-89 to No. 19 Florida Atlantic in the semifinal round Friday.

Iowa State (5-1) also lost its first game of the year Friday, dropping a 71-62 decision to Virginia Tech.

SEC Preseason Player of the Year Wade Taylor IV made five 3-pointers for Texas A&M and scored a career-high 35 points, moving past the 1,000-point mark of his career.

The Aggies trailed by as many as 18 in the second half but were within four points with 6:04 to play before the Owls pulled away for the win.

Head coach Buzz Williams praised his team for its will to not back down, especially after losing Henry Coleman III to an ankle injury. The Aggies' second-leading scorer (14.2 points) and leading rebounder (8.3) is questionable for Sunday.

Boots Radford is questionable as well with an illness.

Still, the Aggies battled tough and nearly pulled off a comeback win.

"I thought their fight and togetherness, their competitive chemistry, their synergy was bigger than Disney World. I was thankful to have a front-row seat," Williams said.

Williams hopes the team learns from the experience and focuses on getting back on track.

"I told guys the whole key now is can we take the lessons we are learning from each step and apply it to the next day," Williams said. "We can't wait to apply it to the next game. We need to incorporate that to where we are and apply it to tomorrow when we work, so then we are just a little bit better when we get to the next game."

For the Cyclones, it's about getting off to a faster start after falling behind by double digits the past two games. They trailed the Hokies 40-30 at the half but nearly rallied for a win.

Milan Momcilovic led Iowa State with a career-best 21 points. The first-year standout is averaging 14.0 points per game.

Head coach T.J. Otzelberger said in a postgame interview on the Varsity Sports Network his team has to just has to keep looking forward.

"I think it's important for our guys, mentally, to kind of flush the system, understand what things happened to put us in deficits in these first two games and hopefully get out to a fast start Sunday," he said.

Improving free-throw shooting is critical to success. The Cyclones were 15-of-26 from the line.

"Definitely the foul line was a factor," Otzelberger said. "We work on them every day. We chart them every day. So we have confidence that we can do it."

Texas A&M and Iowa State are playing for the first time since 2016 when the Aggies came away with a 72-62 win. The two teams have met 20 times, with Texas A&M winning 11 of the matchups.

- Field Level Media

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