McCormack helps No. 15 Kansas stumble previous TCU, 59-51

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) Kansas and TCU waged such an epic offensive battle Thursday night time that the very best shooter might have been Jayhawks heart David McCormack, who hit his first 3-point try of the season throughout their essential second half.

“He doesn’t even shoot them in apply,” teammate Ochai Agbaji mentioned with a smile.

That helped McCormack end with 15 factors, and Agbaji added 13 because the Jayhawks overcame a sluggish first half to beat the turnover-prone Horned Frogs 59-51. Dajuan Harris and Tyon Grant-Foster additionally gave an enormous enhance from the bench as Kansas averted a fourth straight loss for the primary time for the reason that 1988-89 season.

“We really performed with extra power,” mentioned Jayhawks coach Invoice Self. “We didn’t see the ball go within the gap, however we noticed some guys make some huge baskets for us, and David made the largest one. However we did some higher issues within the second half. ”

Mike Miles hit 5 3-pointers and had 18 factors to steer the Horned Frogs, who turned the ball 22 occasions and shot simply 35% from the sphere. RJ Nembhard added 12 factors, nicely under his season common of 17.2 per sport.

“What it confirmed,” mentioned Self, “is which you can defend and play like shit and nonetheless be within the sport.”

On account of COVID-19 issues, Horned Frogs performed for the primary time since shedding in Oklahoma on January 12. They obtained a trio of video games postponed, first as a consequence of issues with West Virginia, then as a consequence of their very own outbreak.

Amongst those that examined optimistic was TCU coach Jamie Dixon, who earlier this week mentioned he was “hesitant” to make the journey to Lawrence. However the newest analysis didn’t cease Dixon from spending all the sport along with his masks round his chin quite than over his mouth, whether or not he was hugging or shouting at officers on the court docket.

“We’re not coaching,” Dixon mentioned. “No person actually talked about it, however we have had seven work stoppages. So there have clearly been some challenges the place we aren’t the place we should be for various causes and quite a lot of areas. However nobody cares and now we have to get higher due to it. I am inspired by what we did right here. ”

The Jayhawks additionally had motive to be rusty. That they had solely performed as soon as within the final ten days, and their final sport at Allen Fieldhouse – with its socially distant viewers of about 2,000 followers – was January 9 in opposition to Oklahoma.

So it was not very stunning when TCU led 19-18 at halftime in a sport that was as ugly because the consequence.

There was a distance that coated greater than seven minutes the place Horned Frogs had virtually as many turnovers (5) as makes an attempt to subject targets (seven) and by no means scored. After they obtained a bucket to go, it was in the course of an eight-minute stretch the place Kansas went 1 for 13 off the ground, twisted it thrice and even hit an open lineup.

Junior highschool video games have resulted in simpler crimes.

Self tweaked his lineup to begin the second half and barely put Harris and Grant-Foster on the ground. They usually made an instantaneous impression. Foster attacked the rim for a foul whereas Harris scored 5 fast factors, as soon as after his personal set-up with a steal on incoming and a foul – he made one of many two free throws.

On the different finish, TCU had already reached the 20 gross sales mark in the course of the second half of the 12 months.

Kansas nonetheless couldn’t shake till Grant-Foster caught a missed 3-pointer by Christian Braun and scooped underneath for a layup that made it 47-43 with 5 minutes left. McCormack adopted along with his 3-pointer, Agbaji and Garrett added dunks, and the lead swelled to an unbeatable 54-44 with three minutes left.

“I knew it was late for the shot,” McCormack mentioned. “I felt I used to be on a monitor and took the shot with confidence. It was very satisfying. I advised them when it left my hand, I knew I had the arrogance that it might go in. ”

THE WHOLE PICTURE

TCU did some good issues, backed up the Jayhawks and apparently received each 50-50 ball. However the turnover turned out to be an excessive amount of to beat, particularly within the second half, when Kansas put the sport out of attain.

Kansas received regardless of taking 4 of 17 from past the arc and 9 of 16 from the foul line. Nonetheless, the Jayhawks obtained some manufacturing from their beginning again. Braun, Marcus Garrett and Jalen Wilson mixed to 4 of 16 from the sphere.

JUST

Kansas visits No. 18 in Tennessee whereas TCU travels to No. 12 in Missouri for the SEC-Massive 12 Problem on Saturday.

For extra AP school basketball protection: https://apnews.com/Collegebasketball and http://twitter.com/AP-Top25

McCormack helps No. 15 Kansas stumble previous TCU, 59-51 initially appeared on NBCSports.com

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