TCU rallies in first half but loses to Texas Tech 60-49


    After an exciting first half in which they battled back from being down by 13, the TCU men’s basketball team lost to the Texas Tech Red Raiders 60-49 on Saturday afternoon.

    “Well, we had opportunities,” TCU head coach Trent Johnson said. “But it’s tough.”

    Junior forward Amric Fields tied with freshman center Karviar Shepherd for a game-high of 15 points. Fields also had six rebounds for the Frogs (9-8, 0-5 Big 12) in the loss.

    Struggles on the offensive end made things difficult for TCU once again. The Frogs made just 20.4 percent of their shots from the field and went 3-21 from behind the arc.

    “From an offensive standpoint, I thought the guys just pressed a little bit when shooting the ball,” Johnson said. “We just gotta keep plugging.”

    TCU was out-rebounded 41-29 for the game. They have been out-rebounded in each of their last five games.

    “We gotta improve on rebounding,” Johnson said.

    The Frogs also made 26 of their 31 free throws in the loss. They are currently third in the Big 12 in free throw percentage, averaging over 70 percent per game.

    “It’s skill level,” Johnson said. “It’s confidence but it’s skill level. You have the right guys shooting them.”

    The Red Raiders (10-8, 2-3 Big 12) had lost twelve straight road games coming into today’s contest. The loss for TCU extends their losing streak to five straight.

    Early in the game, Shepherd had a shot at a big dunk after grabbing an offensive rebound but missed it. He was then called for a technical foul after hanging onto the rim too long.

    Shepherd grabbed seven rebounds in addition to his 15 points.

    “He got back to being himself,” Johnson said. “It happens with every freshman.”

    TCU started off slow on offense once again, missing their first eight shots and only making one of their first 18 attempts.

    Coming off an 82-72 upset win over the twelfth-ranked Baylor Bears (13-4, 1-3 Big 12), the Red Raiders opened the game with a 15-4 run. Texas Tech guard Dusty Hannahs scored eight points during that stretch.

    Hannahs finished the game with team-high 13 points.

    With 6:49 left in the first half, the Frogs trailed 21-8 and looked like they were going to get blown out of the building. They then responded with an energetic 16-1 run, capped by a three-pointer from freshman forward Brandon Parrish.

    Parrish’s three gave the Frogs a 24-23 lead at halftime.

    The Red Raiders opened up the second half with a 9-2 run, capped by a tip-in from forward Dejan Kravic. The Canadian 7-footer had 12 points and 10 rebounds for Texas Tech in the win.

    With 10:38 left in the game, Fields hit a three-pointer to cut the deficit down to two and the Frogs trailed 36-34. Hannahs responded with a three-pointer of his own.

    The Frogs continued to keep fighting in the second half but Texas Tech seemed to have a response every time, never letting the home team tie the game.

    “The most important thing in all of this is for the kids in the locker room to stay together,” Johnson said. “What you put into something is what you get out of it.”

    TCU trailed by eight with about six minutes left in the game after Red Raiders guard Robert Turner hit a pair of free throws. Turner finished the game with 12 points.

    With the Frogs down six and 2:50 left in the game, senior forward Jarvis Ray was fouled hard on a fastbreak layup. He would cut the lead to five after making one of the ensuing free throws.

    Ray struggled for most of the afternoon, scoring five points but only making one of his 10 shot attempts.

    “He probably took four threes that are not what he needed to take,” Johnson said.

    With 1:26 left in the game and the Frogs down six, Shepherd hit an and-one layup to put the game at 51-48 Texas Tech.

    Turner would respond with a running jumper for the Red Raiders, giving them a five-point lead with under a minute left to play.

    Junior guard Kyan Anderson was fouled on the ensuing possession but missed one of his free throws and the Frogs trailed by four with 50 seconds left in the game.

    After TCU was forced to foul and the Red Raiders converted on their free throws, Turner would hit a fastbreak layup to put the game at 57-49 Texas Tech.

    With 23.8 seconds left in the game, the Frogs were down by nine and turned the ball over, being forced to once again foul Texas Tech.

    The Red Raiders made 24 of 31 free throws on the afternoon. They currently lead the Big 12 in made free throw percentage.

    Texas Tech guard Toddrick Gotcher would make the ensuing free throws and when the clock ran out, TCU had lost 60-49.

    The announced attendance for the game was 6,055.

    “I thought the student section was unbelievable,” Johnson said. “I thought it was really, really good and the kids fed off of that.”

    Next up, the Frogs are expected to head to Norman, Okla., for a Wednesday night showdown with the Oklahoma Sooners (14-4, 3-2 Big 12). Tip-off is scheduled for 8:00 p.m. CT.