Aggies can’t hold back TCU’s comeback

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) Facing one of the country’s top scoring teams, TCU got the defense it needed at just the right time.

The Lady Frogs used a 15-2 run over the game’s final five minutes and got a critical call late to beat 10th-ranked Texas A&M 56-54 on Saturday night.

Helen Sverrisdottir scored 18 of her season-high 20 points in the second half to lead TCU (7-3), which extended its home winning streak to 12 games.

“We’ve been talking about this game for a long time,” Sverrisdottir said.

Tyra White scored 16 points for Texas A&M (7-1) and was the only player in double-figures for the Aggies, who were held 33 points under their season average and committed 23 turnovers that led to 24 TCU points.

“I thought we made a lot of plays down the stretch and that was huge for us,” TCU coach Jeff Mittie said. “Our defense did a lot of really good things tonight.”

Sverrisdottir scored nine of TCU’s final 15 points, including a key 3-pointer from the top of the key that tied it with 1:29 remaining before T.K. LaFleur hit a pair of free throws on TCU’s next trip to put the Lady Frogs in front, 56-54 with 38 seconds left. It was TCU’s first lead since the 7:14 mark of the first half.

“I just pretended it was like the beginning of the game,” LaFleur said of her clutch free throws. “I just told myself, ‘You do this every day.'”

LaFleur scored 15 points and Emily Carter had 11 for TCU.

A&M lost the ball on the ensuing possession and was then whistled for a shot-clock violation with 8.5 seconds remaining that drew the ire of Aggies coach Gary Blair.

TCU’s Emily Carter ended up on the floor with a loose ball as the officials blew the whistle. No jump ball was signaled and the Frogs were out of timeouts. After a discussion between the officials, it was ruled that the shot clock had run out and Carter had not signaled time out.

“TCU just won a ballgame over Kansas by Kansas calling a timeout (they didn’t have),” Blair said. “Then they ended up doing the same thing and we ended up not getting the reward for it.”

Mittie was asked if he got an explanation after the call.

“Once they told me it was our ball, I didn’t need an explanation,” he quipped.

Sverrisdottir missed a pair of foul shots with 5.9 seconds remaining before Tanisha Smith’s desperation 3-point attempt clanged off the side of the backboard at the buzzer.

“TCU’s defense was outstanding and they hit just enough shots to get it done,” Blair added.

A&M led by 14 points (45-31) with 11:45 remaining but made just four baskets the rest of the way. One of those was a 3-pointer from the right corner from Sydney Carter. The trey gave the Aggies a 52-41 lead with 5:18 to play and prompted TCU to switch from man-to-man to a zone defense.

A&M scored had one field goal after that.

“Defense really fuels our team, and when we’re not getting stops it hurts our offensive rhythm,” said Sydney Carter.

Updated December 12, 2009