Nov. 20, 2012
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FORT WORTH--TCU kept things exciting once again Tuesday at Daniel-Meyer Coliseum, overcoming another second-half deficit during a 47-45 home victory over Navy. Sophomore forward Devonta Abron posted his first career double-double with 13 points and 12 rebounds to lead the Horned Frogs.
The victory moved TCU's season record to 4-1 for the first time since 2007-08. Trent Johnson also became the first TCU coach to start his Frog tenure 4-1 since Mike Brumbelow opened his career 6-1 in 1937.
The Frogs found themselves in another back-and-forth battle, this time against the Midshipmen in a game featuring nine ties and nine lead changes. TCU continued to win with its defense, holding the Mids to only 37.3 percent shooting overall, including 25.0 percent from beyond the arc. Navy was the fourth opponent in five games this season that TCU has held below the 50-point mark.
Abron was the breakout player of the night in his first start as a Frog, as he became the fifth different player to lead the team in scoring this season by matching his previous career high. He did most of his damage in the second half, scoring 11 points and making 5-of-6 field goals following intermission. His play inside helped lead the squad to a 26-16 scoring advantage in the paint.
Sophomore guard Kyan Anderson chipped in nine points for TCU and shared the team lead in assists (four) with senior guard Nate Butler Lind, who played a game-high 38 minutes. Senior forward Connell Crossland and junior guard Jarvis Ray added six points each.
Navy had three player score in double figures in forward Worth Smith (14 points), guard Brandon Venturini (12 points) and guard Tilman Dunbar (10 points). Smith also led the Mids on the glass with nine boards.
Trailing by five points early in the second half, Abron began to make his imposing presence felt in the paint. The Dallas native scored seven points in a five-and-a-half minute stretch early in the stanza to put TCU up buy two, 32-30.
The contest continued to bounce back and forth, with Navy holding a one-point advantage following a 3-pointer by guard Phil Guglielmo before the Frogs took the lead for good. Abron started a key 6-0 run with 4:36 remaining with another basket inside, while Ray added a layup off a nice feed from Abron. Green then provided the signature play with a huge putback slam to gave TCU a 46-40 edge with just over two minutes to play.
Navy refused to give up, cutting the deficit back to one point inside the final 15 seconds thanks to five straight points by Venturini. Freshman guard Clyde Smith III sank only the front end of a 1-and-1 free-throw opportunity for TCU to give the Mids one last opportunity, but Venturini's last-second 3-point attempt glanced off the rim at the buzzer.
Navy jumped out to an early lead as TCU experienced another slow offensive start to the night. The Frogs sank only 1-of-6 shots to begin the game while falling down by six points just five minutes in. The squad turned things around to grab its first lead with a 12-5 run late in the half closed out by a pair of Butler Lind baskets.
The Mids scored eight straight points late in the first half to climb back on top by seven, but an Anderson trey with just under a minute remaining in the period brought back to within three at the break, 26-23.
TCU takes to the road for the first time this season during Thanksgiving break when it travels to South Padre Island for its final two matchups of the South Padre Island Invitational. The Frogs first face Northwestern on Friday at 7:30 p.m. at the South Padre Island Convention Center followed by a Saturday matchup against either Illinois State or UAB at 4 or 7 p.m.