The depleted TCU men’s basketball team dropped its home opener 82-79 to the Longwood Lancers, despite a second-half surge.
“We got what we deserved,” TCU head coach Trent Johnson said.
Longwood sophomore Lucas Woodhouse buried a three over two Horned Frog defenders with 1.7 seconds left to lift the visiting Lancers over TCU.
Woodhouse drove the ball the length of the floor and pulled up for the game-winner after TCU tied the game with seven seconds to play at 79-79 on a pair of Kyan Anderson free throws.
Johnson said he knew Woodhouse’s shot was in before it ever went through the net.
“He had a dead-on look,” Johnson said. “When it left his hands, I knew it was good.”
Longwood senior guard Tristan Carey was the star of the night, scoring 31 points for the visiting Lancers. Most of Carey’s damage was done behind the three-point line where he shot 7-of-12.
TCU struggled to score in the first half, shooting only 29.2 percent from the floor and 25 percent from the three-point arc. The Lancers shot more than 50 percent from the field in the first half, resulting in a 40-27 Longwood lead at the break.
Johnson said that TCU’s mental toughness was not present in the first half.
“I was really surprised at our lack of energy,” Johnson said. “When the ball is not going down for you, you cannot let that dictate how you play.”
TCU opened the second half with inspired play, fighting back to tie the game at 40-40.
Johnson said his message to the team at halftime was brief.
“There wasn’t a lot to say,” Johnson said. “Sometimes, and I’ve been doing this a long time, you have to let them figure it out.”
Senior guard Jarvis Ray started the second half with a bang for TCU, hammering home a driving slam on TCU’s opening possession. Ray’s night finished early as he fouled out with 15 points and four rebounds.
TCU shot 60 percent from the field in the second half.
Both Ray and freshman center Karviar Shepherd dealt with foul trouble the entire game.
“I tell them to always be aggressive and to adjust to how the game is being called,” Johnson said. “But the bottom line is Karviar and Jarvis sat there for a long time, and we had a lead.
“It’s about playing good basketball with what you have.”
Shepherd was the only true interior presence to suit up for a TCU squad that played without five forwards. Juniors Amric Fields and Devonta Abron, and freshmen Aaron Durley and Hudson Price were all sidelined by injury. UTEP transfer Chris Washburn is out while he waits for the NCAA’s decision on his eligibility.
“I don’t care who is on the floor,” Johnson said. “The guys that are on the floor are capable of playing better basketball than we played today. For me, that’s what I dwell on.
“It’s the game of basketball. It is about being competitive and doing the things right that you work on in practice, and those are the things we didn’t do.”
Anderson led TCU in scoring with 17. Along with Anderson and Ray, freshmen guards Brandon Parrish and Michael Williams finished the night in double figures. Parrish finished with 13, including a clutch three-pointer late in the game, and Williams had 11.
No TCU players were available for comment after the game.