Robinson FT after iffy foul lifts TCU over Texas Tech 62-61
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) Alex Robinson’s winning free throw pushed TCU closer to the school’s first NCAA Tournament berth in almost 20 years.
Texas Tech coach Chris Beard thought the game should have been decided in overtime.
Robinson hit the deciding shot after a questionable foul call with 1.4 seconds remaining, and the Horned Frogs beat the Red Raiders 62-61 on Tuesday night in a matchup of Big 12 teams trying to build their tournament resumes.
Keenan Evans was called for the foul as the ball went off Robinson’s leg as he drove to the basket. After putting the Horned Frogs in front, Robinson missed the second free throw on purpose, and Aaron Ross couldn’t get off a length-of-the-court shot before the buzzer sounded.
”My opinion, just being a basketball fan more than anything, a guy that loves the game, a guy that would do anything for the game, I think this game should go to overtime and let the players decide,” Beard said. ”That being said, I have a lot of respect for the Big 12 officials.”
Freshman Jaylen Fisher scored a career-high 17 points as the Horned Frogs (17-7, 6-5 Big 12) won their third straight following a four-game losing streak. TCU is back over .500 in conference after getting to that mark for the first time in five Big 12 seasons last month.
Evans scored 20 points for the Red Raiders (16-8, 4-7) but missed the second free throw after tying the score on the first with 13 seconds left, setting up the closing sequence with both teams out of timeouts.
”I never talk about the calls afterward,” said TCU coach Jamie Dixon, in his first year with the Horned Frogs after taking Pittsburgh to the NCAAs 11 times in 13 seasons. ””I certainly wouldn’t want to start doing it now. Certainly interesting down the stretch there.”
JD Miller scored 15 points and went 4 of 4 from 3-point range, including one in the final seconds of the first half for TCU’s first lead of the game after trailing 21-9.
Miller had another go-ahead 3 in the final 2 minutes, and Vladimir Brodziansky made a pair of free throws for a 61-60 lead after Anthony Livingston put Texas Tech ahead with a bucket.
Brodziansky scored 14 points, matching Livingston. Zach Smith had 11 points and 10 rebounds for Texas Tech.
Texas Tech: If the Red Raiders don’t make a second straight trip to the tournament in Beard’s first season, the Big 12 road record will have a lot to do with it. They dropped to 0-6 away from home in conference. Texas is the only other winless road team in Big 12 play.
TCU: It was the Frogs’ first game since beating Texas and getting an NCAA endorsement from Longhorns coach Shaka Smart, who took VCU to the Final Four six years ago. A .500 conference record could be good enough for the first berth since 1998, and the Horned Frogs took a big step toward that.
The Horned Frogs won despite 21 turnovers, one off the season high from two games earlier against Kansas State, another win. Those are the only 20-plus turnover games of the season for TCU. Robinson led with five, and everyone who played had at least one. ”We don’t always have perfect practices,” said Fisher, who had three. ”And practice is just a steady grind. So we just translate it to the game.”
LT IN THE HOUSE
Newly elected Pro Football Hall of Famer LaDainian Tomlinson got a standing ovation and chants of ”LT” when he was shown on the video board during a timeout in the first half. Tomlinson had 5,387 yards rushing for his career at TCU, including 2,158 as a senior before San Diego drafted him fifth overall in 2001. He was elected in Houston on Saturday, the day before the Super Bowl, and will be inducted in August in Canton, Ohio.
Texas Tech: Consecutive Top 10 opponents at home: No. 3 Kansas on Saturday and sixth-ranked Baylor on Monday.
TCU: A trip to Baylor on Saturday followed by Oklahoma State at home Feb. 15.
Corrects previous versions of headline with TCU winning instead of Texas Tech.
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