COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- Tyra White had started 87 straight games before missing the last three with a foot injury.
On Saturday, the Texas A&M star looked like her old self, scoring 18 points with seven rebounds to lead the defending national champion Aggies to a 69-47 win over Albany in the first round of the NCAA tournament.
She got going early, scoring 12 points in the first half, and added four points and a steal in a decisive second-half run.
The Great Danes had scored six straight points to tie it early in the second half before A&M used a 17-4 run to take a 49-36 lead with about 13 minutes remaining.
Albany had three turnovers and missed three layups in that span. Alexia Standish had two 3-pointers and Sydney Carter hit one during A&M's spurt.
The third-seeded Aggies (23-10) were making their school-record seventh straight tournament appearance and hosting games for the first time since 1994. It was the first NCAA appearance for No. 14 seed Albany, which got an automatic bid by winning the America East tournament.
The Great Danes, who moved to Division I in 1999, won 10 straight games to get into the tournament and hadn't lost since Jan. 28.
Ebone Henry had 14 points and nine rebounds and Julie Forster added eight points and 12 rebounds for Albany (23-10), which won 20 games for the first time since jumping to Division I.
Standish, a freshman, had 12 points -- all on 3-pointers -- for A&M and Adaora Elonu chipped in 13 points and three steals.
The victory sets up Monday's game with sixth-seeded Arkansas, where Gary Blair coached before coming to A&M. The Razorbacks knocked off Dayton in the first game in College Station on Saturday.