TCU guard Lauren Heard led the team with 35 points and 6 rebounds in the loss against Kansas State. (Photo courtesy of gofrogs.com)
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The last time the TCU Horned Frogs (8-13, 3-13 Big 12) took on the Kansas State Wildcats (8-15, 3-13 Big 12), they were coming off a 3-game losing streak and came out with a win.

However, last night that was not the case. After riding a three-game losing streak, the Horned Frogs fell in a heartbreaking overtime loss, 79-76.

The first half would feature an exchange of runs by both teams as Kansas State took an early 7-0 lead, but TCU fought back, going on a 6-0 run led by senior guard Lauren Heard. The Wildcats would go on a 6-0 run in response to TCU and finish the first quarter up 21-14.

Kansas State guard Christianna Carr had a career night against the Horned Frogs, scoring 31 points. Carr would score 13 of her 31 points in the first quarter and 22 in the first half. However, the Horned Frogs were able to hold all-Big 12 center Ayoka Lee to just two points in the first half. 

The Wildcats went into halftime with a 37-27 lead as the Horned Frogs shot 4-19 from outside the arc and Heard missed the final two minutes of the first half.

“We had a slower start than we needed to and that has happened in a couple of games now, but I’m proud of the fight, effort and the grit. They didn’t give up. Heartbreaking that we weren’t able to come out with the win on the road,” head coach Raegan Pebley said. “I know this is a team that’s fearlessly trying to fight and stay locked into each other.”

TCU came out of halftime strong as the team erased a 16-point deficit. Guards Aahliyah Jackson and Tavy Diggs hit clutch threes in the third quarter to help the Horned Frogs outscore Kansas State 23-18 and cut the lead to just five points, 55-50. 

“In the second half they just did a second half staying locked in with each other and there was better synergy on the floor,” Pebley said.

Heard would take over in the second half. After scoring just nine points in the first half, she would go on to score 11 of her 35 points in the third quarter.

“Lauren was incredibly valiant in her effort today offensively and defensively and on the board,” Pebley said. “She’s just giving everything she has to her team and you know it’s special to see her perform.”

Heard also led the team in rebounds with six.

For the Wildcats, Lee scored 27 points in the second half and Carr would only score three.

TCU would get its first lead after a steal by Michelle Berry leading to a layup that gave TCU the 58-57 lead with five minutes left in the game.   

A buzzer-beater by Lauren Heard with 44 seconds left would tie the game at 64 and send the game to overtime as neither team could pull ahead in the final seconds.

In overtime, the teams exchanged the lead, but the Horned Frogs would fall short as Diggs would hit a shot that counted as a two-pointer instead of a three, failing to tie the game. 

TCU will remain on the road as the Frogs take on the Oklahoma Sooners this Thursday, March 4. Tip-off is set for 5 p.m. and the game will be televised on Big 12 Now on ESPN+.

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Samantha Fristachi is a senior from Massapequa, New York. She is a journalism and sports broadcasting major and a business minor. She hopes to be a sports broadcaster on ESPN one day.