Basketball

Red Raiders Win 5 In a Row. Texas Tech Beats TCU, 83-79

The Texas Tech Red Raiders continue their improbable winning streak as they beat TCU to make it five in a row.

Texas Tech 83, TCU 79

* The Flex is a shout-out to Tubby Smith’s flex offense and a place for us to set some screens, make some cuts and discuss the game.

  • The first half was incredibly rough for Texas Tech. TCU made 7 three-point shots on 11 attempts and there is no bigger equalizer than making shots and especially hitting three-point shots. I think it would be safe to say that giving up 47 points is an indication of some pretty terrible defense and I think that was the case. TCU led Texas Tech by 12 at the half and it really could have been worse.
  • The other problem in the first half was that Texas Tech was fouling, another indication of poor defense. At the half, Gotcher, Temple, Evan and Williams all had 2 fouls and TCU shot 14 free throws by halftime.
  • The second half started very much going Texas Tech’s way. That 12 point lead was reduced to a 2 point lead with 3 and a half minutes expiring. Texas Tech forced some tough shots for TCU and then Toddrick Gotcher hits a coupdl of three-point shots to climb back into the game. It was really quite amazing how quickly that lead evaporated for TCU. Not only that, but the crowd was back in the game.
  • Keenan Evans was in foul trouble for part of the first half and picked up his third foul early in the second half. Devon Thomas came in and played well. He hardly saw any time against Oklahoma State, but he played quite a bit and played well. With about 13 minutes in the second half, Thomas found Zach Smith for an alley-oop that puts Texas Tech up by 2.

  • I’m writing as I watch the game and Texas Tech gets in the bonus with about 10 minutes left in the game. That could prove to be significant.
  • Thomas gets his hands on yet another pass and that led to a fast break for a Gray layup and one. At this point, TCU is starting to lose their cool a bit. Toddrick Gotcher grabs the rebound on the ensuing TCU offensive set and Gotcher is fouled 50 feet from the basket. Just doesn’t make any sense. Gotcher hits 1 of 2 and Texas Tech goes up by 6.
  • Maybe the difference in the first half and the second half was the fact that Texas Tech was relentless in driving to the basket. That resulted eiher in a really short shot or free throws. Both items are things that Tubby Smith wanted to do since the start of the second half.
  • With 45 seconds left in the game, Evans is looking for some place to drive the basketball and he throws up a layup that is promptly blocked by TCU. Aaron Ross throws up a shot to beat the shot-clock and Zach Smith follows with a beautiful put-back where he’s almost falling behind the basket. This puts Texas Tech up by 4, 82-78.
  • TCU then goes down the court and one of their hot-shooting guards drives to the basket and Smith comes up huge again with a block of the shot and then Smith gets fouled and hits 1 of 2. With 11 seconds, Gray fouls TCU on a screener and Smith is as pissed and animated as I’ve ever seen him. TCU is shooting 1-and-1, makes the first, misses the second and the ball bounces around and the clock essentially runs out. Texas Tech gets the win. That’s five conference wins in a row and Texas Tech is 8-7 in the conference.
  • Some notable stats: Zach Smith was terrific, scoring 23 points on 8 of 13 from the floor to go along with 8 rebounds and 3 blocks. Aaron Ross had 25 points on 6 of 13, including 12 of 12 from the free throw line. Toddrick Gotcher had 16 points, including 4 of 9 from the three-point line. Keenan Evans had 5 assists, 6 points and just 1 turnover. Again, Devon Thomas was terrific in spelling Evans. Stats won’t show it, but he was great.
  • Texas Tech shot 33 free throws and made 26. Game over.
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