Gathers, No. 21 Baylor beat TCU 66-59 in overtime
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) No. 21 Baylor had plenty to be frustrated about Saturday.
The Bears were struggling all game against TCU’s stellar defense, but when Kenny Chery nailed a jumper to tie it at 53 with a minute to go, things began to click.
Rico Gathers had 17 points and a career-high 18 rebounds to lead Baylor to its first Big 12 Conference win of the season, 66-59 over TCU in overtime.
”We started off, we were trying to rush things, and we didn’t pay attention to detail to execute,” said Chery, who scored 13. ”It was really physical. (At the end of) regulation, that’s when we started feeling better about ourselves and we just wanted to win.”
The Bears had their worst shooting game of the season, making just 29.8 percent from the floor that included a 2-for-17 stretch in the first half. They were even worse from 3-point range, going 1 for 12 (8.3 percent).
Baylor (12-3, 1-2) won its sixth-straight over TCU – all since the Horned Frogs joined the Big 12 – but the previous five wins were by an average of 20.8 points. This time, there were 11 lead changes and 18 ties.
Taurean Prince scored 17 points, including Baylor’s only two field goals in overtime, but fouled out with 1:33 to go in the extra period. When Chery hit two free throws with 46.7 seconds left to make it 61-56, it gave the Bears their largest lead to that point.
TCU (13-3, 0-3) only made one basket in overtime. Kyan Anderson led TCU with 16 points. The Frogs, who won 13 in a row to start the season, have now lost 23 straight in the Big 12.
”We certainly had our opportunities,” TCU coach Trent Johnson said. ”Boy, oh, boy, oh, boy, it’s getting old.
”We went up five and just had some really bad uncharacteristic turnovers – two in regulation and one in overtime. Just really bad, careless plays.”
Tied 53-all with a minute left, Chris Washburn missed a shot for TCU. Chery’s ensuing shot was blocked by Karviar Shepherd and the Bears committed a shot clock violation, turning the ball over with 1.7 seconds left.
Anderson caught the inbounds pass for the Frogs but stumbled and wasn’t able to get a shot off as time expired.
”Anytime you face a good defensive team when you’re not scoring you get frustrated and usually you don’t play good defense on the other end,” Baylor coach Scott Drew said. ”Credit our guys for continuing to guard because we held them to 37 percent which gave us a chance, and we rebounded which gave us a chance.”
A 9-4 run by TCU late in the second half fired up the home crowd and gave TCU its largest lead of the game at 49-44.
In the run, Shepherd and Trey Ziegler each had big dunks, Anderson swished a 3-pointer with and then Anderson found Amric Fields on a fast break for a finger-roll layup. Only Prince could stop TCU’s momentum. He had a steal that he turned into a fast-break dunk for Baylor, then Lester Medford’s three-point play made it 49-49, the 16th tie.
TCU: In three losses this season, the Frogs have trailed by single digits in the last five minutes. In their 13 wins, the Frogs never trailed in the last five minutes.
Baylor: Johnathan Motley, who had averaged 15 points, 6.7 rebounds and 3.2 blocks in his last six games, scored eight, had one rebound and one block against TCU.
The win for Baylor prevented the Bears from starting 0-3 for the first time since the 2005-2006 season when Baylor lost its first six Big 12 games. Baylor lost its first two Big 12 games by a combined 11 points, including Wednesday night’s 56-55 loss to Kansas. ”It’s important to get a win in the Big 12 and get going,” Drew said. ”You need confidence especially after a tough, hard fought loss to come back and get a win. I was really proud of how the guys responded.”
NOT SO FREE
Baylor and TCU combined for 74 free throws, making only 46. Baylor missed nine free throws in the first half but only six in the second half and overtime combined. TCU’s 13 missed free throws were a big emphasis of Johnson’s postgame talk. ”These are the plays that are beating us,” he said. ”Our inability to keep people off the glass, inability to make free throws.” TCU also lost the rebounding battle 49-41 and gave up 22 offensive rebounds to Baylor.
TCU: plays at Texas Tech next Saturday.
Baylor: hosts Iowa State on Wednesday.