Timely TCU buckets dispatch Kansas, 80-68
LAWRENCE, Kan. – After shooting above 40 percent for the first time in Big 12 Conference action, Kansas women’s basketball found its rhythm offensively, but couldn’t find an answer to TCU’s timely baskets down the stretch, as the Horned Frogs swept the 2017 series with an 80-68 victory on Sunday afternoon inside Allen Fieldhouse.
The Jayhawks (7-16, 1-11 Big 12) and the Horned Frogs (11-11, 3-8 Big 12) sported pink uniforms to raise awareness and money for breast cancer research in KU’s annual ‘Jayhawks for a Cure’ game. Although Kansas didn’t get the outcome it wanted at the end of the ballgame, KU was able to donate over $7,000, which went to Lawrence Memorial Hospital and the KU Cancer Center.
In a back-and-fourth game, redshirt junior guard Jessica Washington led all scorers with 27 points. Senior forward Caelynn Manning-Allen tied her season high with 14 points along with grabbing six rebounds. Defensively, sophomore guard
Redshirt junior Jessica Washington
Jayde Christopher tied her career high of five rebounds and dished out a team-best four assists.
Junior guard AJ Alix led the Horned Frogs with 25 points on 7-of-11 shooting from the floor, while also connecting on all eight attempts from the free throw line. Sophomore center Jordan Moore registered the only double-double of the day with 18 points and 14 rebounds. Senior guard Jada Butts added 13 points and six assists rounding out TCU’s double-digit scorers.
TCU opened up the ‘Jayhawks for a Cure’ game on fire offensively outshooting the Jayhawks, 8-2, in the opening three minutes. The Jayhawks’ defense would be the story of the first quarter, however, forcing the Horned Frogs to eight turnovers. Kansas leads the league in turnovers forced with 19.1 and by the end of the matchup, TCU had turned the ball over 20 times.
Kansas stayed within striking distance after a jumper by Washington cut the Jayhawks deficit, 10-6. The Horned Frogs’ best defensive effort couldn’t stop Manning-Allen from earning three points for the Jayhawks to put KU within three. KU continued to chip away at TCU’s advantage late in the first quarter.
Defensive efforts by sophomore guard Kylee Kopatich and Washington contributed to a five minute TCU scoring drought from the floor and three turnovers in two minutes. Washington followed up on the offensive end with a 3-point basket to cut the Horned Frogs’ lead to one possession, 14-12. Senior forward Sydney Umeri sank a jumper just before the buzzer sounded at the end of the opening period. Umeri’s buzzer-beater cut the Jayhawks deficit, 15-14, going into the second period.
The Jayhawks opened up the second quarter with a 3-point basket from senior guard Timeka O’Neal to give Kansas its first lead of the game, 16-15. O’Neal followed up with a charge that ended in a basket for Manning-Allen on the offensive end for KU.
TCU’s offensive intensity kept the game within one point for much of the second quarter. Moore gave the Horned Frogs the lead with a put-back layup, but Kansas regained the lead, 25-23, after three-points from Washington. TCU returned the three-point play with an and-one opportunity from Butts giving the Horned Frogs a one-point lead, 26-25. Moore added another layup to extend the TCU lead to three, 28-25.
A pair of free throws from Christopher put KU back within one, 28-27. The TCU’s advantage grew to five for a brief time until Kopatich responded with a layup. A 3-point basket from freshman guard Amber Ramirez looked to extend the Horned Frogs’ lead, but Manning-Allen responded with a layup, as KU’s deficit narrowed, 35-32, heading into the locker room at the half.
Junior guard Chayla Cheadle started off the second half with a layup to cut the TCU lead, 35-34 and a pair of free throws from Washington allowed Kansas to regain the lead, 36-35. The third quarter continued to be a back and forth game as the Jayhawks struggled to stop TCU’s Moore. Kansas was unable to stop the Horned Frogs, defensively, as they went on an 8-0 run over 36 seconds, giving them a nine-point lead, 47-38.
Manning-Allen cut the TCU lead to six with a layup, 49-43. Washington attempted to spark another comeback attempt for the Jayhawks with a 3-pointer, but TCU’s Alix answered with back-to-back baskets from long range of her own extending TCU’s lead to 10, the first time to reach a double-digit advantage in the ballgame. The Jayhawks kept up the intensity on the offensive end, and worked to erase their deficit. Despite strong efforts, offensively, the Horned Frogs remained on top by seven going into the final quarter, 63-55.
The Horned Frogs had an answer for every move the Jayhawks made in the opening minutes of the fourth quarter. A Washington 3-pointer and a Manning-Allen block on the defensive end attempted to ignite a Jayhawk run, but the Horned Frogs once again responded and maintained momentum.
TCU went on a 9-0 run late in the game as Kansas was held scoreless for four and a half minutes. The drought was ended, but the damage was done and the Jayhawks couldn’t muster a comeback in the final minutes of the game. TCU ran away with the victory, 80-68, in the fourth quarter to sweep the 2017 series.
Kansas welcomes Oklahoma State to Allen Fieldhouse on Wednesday, Feb. 8, for the final contest of its two-game homestand. Tipoff against the Cowgirls is set for 7 p.m., on the Jayhawk Television Network and the Jayhawk Radio Network.
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