A cold second half shooting performance prevented TCU from winning their second Big 12 conference game.
West Virginia (16-10 overall, 8-7 Big 12) completed the regular season sweep of TCU (8-18, 1-14) with a 66-56 win Saturday evening. The stat lines in the box score was fairly even, but the deciding moment began five minutes into the second half.
Only trailing West Virginia 28-26 coming out of the locker room, freshman Kamy Cole and sophomore Natalie Ventress opened the half with a quick 6 points and TCU went ahead 32-30 with 18 minutes left to play. Zahna Medley hit a 3-pointer at the 15:34 mark, and that was all Daniel-Meyer Coliseum would see from the TCU offense for a long time.
The Mountaineers went on a 13-0 run midway through the second half that expanded the lead to 47-38. Guard Bria Holmes came off the bench to contribute 8 points during the run and finished with 10 in the game.
West Virginia eventually turned it into a 19-4 scoring run.
TCU could not find an offensive rhythm in the second half, including a scoreless drought that lasted from 13:15 to the 6:20 mark.
Ventress hit a 3-pointer at the 2:27 mark, TCU's first field goal in over 13 minutes, to cut the deficit to 11. Senior Delisa Gross knocked down a triple next possession to make the score 57-49 Mountaineers, but accurate West Virginia free throw shooting clinched head coach Mike Carey a regular season sweep over TCU.
"I've found out in the Big 12 that by any means, get a win and go home," Carey said. "I told them it wasn't pretty, we got a lot of stuff to work on, let's get out of here."
While Ventress finished with 21 points and nine rebounds and Cole tallied 15 points, TCU's offense was never in sync after the half. TCU head coach Jeff Mittie emphasized TCU's lack of control as a main catalyst for losing the ball game.
"You can't have eight assists and 20 turnovers," Mittie said. "We didn't get enough good shots, and we obviously didn't control the ball very well."
TCU came into this game off their first win in the 2013 calendar year after defeating Oklahoma State 64-63 earlier in the week. Mittie said the team's performance had nothing to do with the infamous sports "hangover" after pulling off the big upset.
"If anything, practice was better," Mittie said. "You can imagine coming in and everybody was energized by that win, so there wasn't any hangover."
The Frogs have three regular season contest remaining: a date in Austin against Texas on Tuesday at 8 p.m., home against Iowa State next Saturday and finish the season in Lawrence against Kansas on March 5.
TCU will look to build some momentum heading into their first ever Phillips 66 Big 12 Conference Championship tournament, which begins March 8.