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Texas Tech Loses Another One In The Final Seconds, 80-76

#6 West Virginia escapes Lubbock with a win. The Red Raiders are now 12-6 (2-5 Big 12).

Michael C. Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

It was great to see Tech back on the court after being off since Monday, but now I feel terrible. If Tech falls short of an NCAA tourney invite, then we will all probably point to this game. We played great and were leading, although not by much, most of the game. But with 20 seconds to go we were down by two with the ball and couldn't make a play. It was very disappointing to come out of a timeout poised to take the last shot and have to throw up a 25 footer that didn't have a prayer. Bad end of game offensive execution seems to be the theme for this team and that is what happens when a team is learning how to win. I still love this team and think they are so much better than last year. Post season play is still attainable, but our margin for error is getting smaller. Man, we should have won this game.

First Half

Tech came out very sluggish. The first ten minutes was a total grind with lots of fouls and turnovers. Also, it looked as if Tech was not going to be able to handle WVU's pressure defense, because it was really giving them problems. Eventually Tech settled in, started playing well, and ended the half on a 10-1 run. At halftime the Red Raiders led 43-40.

Second Half

Tech played a great second half and maybe the best half of basketball this year until the last minute. For the most part we controlled the tempo and held a lead. Our fantastic free throw shooting was what helped Tech keep the game under control.

Game Notes

  • According to Coach Smith Norense Odiase will be out for about six weeks. That should put his return sometime at the end of February. Maybe that gives him a week or two to get into game shape headed into any post season play.
  • Matthew Temple started today, but was in foul trouble the whole game. He was on the bench thirty seconds into the game with two fouls. Pretty impressive to get two fouls that quickly...he had 2 points today.
  • Incredible free throw shooting. 32 of 34 going 94%.
  • Leading scorer Zach Smith was awesome today. By far this was his best game of the season with 18 points, 4 rebounds, 2 steals, and 2 blocks. He was above the rim a lot today and had numerous dunks. He was fun to watch.
  • Tech activated red shirt Rokas Ulvydas to make up for the absence of Odiase.
  • Gotcher finally got it going and ended wth 12 points.
  • Williams was disappointing once again. Overall he really hasn't been good in conference play. He had zero points today. Maybe it is time to let Justin Gray into the starting lineup.
Texas Tech travels to #1 Oklahoma on Tuesday at 6:00. We won in Norman last year and need to win in Norman this year.