March 13, 2013
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KANSAS CITY, Mo.—TCU’s season came to a close Wednesday in the opening round of the 2013 Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship, as seventh-seeded Texas pulled away from the Horned Frogs in the second half for a 70-57 victory at Sprint Center.
The Frogs, who were the bracket’s No. 10 seed, finished the season with an 11-21 overall record. UT advanced to Thursday’s quarterfinal round, where it will face No. 2 seed Kansas State.
TCU hung tough throughout the evening, holding a one-point lead with 12:38 remaining in the contest before Texas ramped up its defensive effort to pull away for the victory. The Longhorns switched to a zone defensive scheme that limited the Frogs to just four field goals for the remainder of the contest.
UT, which was successful reaching the charity stripe all game, started its final push with four straight trips to the stripe to pull in front by five with, 51-46, with just 10 minutes remaining. Guard Julian Lewis, who scored a game-high 19 points, added a 3-pointer with 8:44 to extend the lead to eight. Following a basket by TCU senior forward Adrick McKinney, Texas added another 8-1 spurt to move in front by 13 with just over four minutes left.
The Frogs were able to climb back within 10 with just under three minutes remaining thanks to an old-fashioned 3-point play by freshman guard Charles Hill Jr., but the squad was unable to get any closer.
Senior forward Connell Crossland led TCU in the scorebook in his final game as a Frog with 11 points that included a perfect 7-of-7 showing at the free-throw line. Hill Jr. added 10 points for his second straight double-figure performance. Senior guard Nate Butler Lind and sophomore forward Devonta Abron chipped in nine points each, while senior forward Adrick McKinney and sophomore guard Kyan Anderson both totaled 8 points. Abron led the Frogs on the glass with a game-high 11 rebounds, his third game with 10 or more boards this season.
Joining Lewis in double figures for Texas were guards Myck Kabongo and Sheldon McClellan with 16 and 12 points, respectively. The Longhorns shot 57.9 percent from the field in the second half while pulling away for the victory and finished the contest at 51.3 percent overall. The squad went to the free-throw line 32 times, sinking 25 shots, while its strong second-half defensive performance helped limit TCU to only 32.7 percent shooting from the field for the game.
The Frogs hung with the Longhorns for much of the night after falling behind by as many as nine points less than seven minutes into the contest. TCU climbed back within one with the help of an 8-0 run that featured baskets by Anderson, Abron and senior guard/forward Garlon Green. Butler Lind sank a pair of 3’s late in the half to put the squad up by one with just 2:43 left in the frame at 22-21. Lewis answered with back-to-back treys for Texas.
TCU’s sharp outside shooting continued early in the second half, with Anderson drilling two long buckets and Hill Jr. adding another. Hill’s 3 gave the Frogs a one-point edge, 44-43, but it would be the squad’s last field goal for more than five minutes as the Longhorns began their final push.