March 9, 2013

TCU women’s season ends in Kansas blowout

Big 12 Women’s Tournament: TCU falls to Kansas, while Kansas State edges Texas.

The Kansas women’s basketball team made it a hat trick against TCU at the Big 12 Tournament, downing the Horned Frogs for the third time this season 83-61.

Earlier in the season, TCU held Kansas to one-point and seven-point victories, but could not hang with Kansas shooting 32 percent from the field. In the previous games, 41 percent of TCU’s points have come from 3-point range, but Friday the Horned Frogs shot only 28 percent from deep.

“I thought our shot selection was poor,” Mittie said. “I thought we made strides over the last week in our shot selection. Tonight, if there’s anything, the atmosphere gets you a little sped up and you have to settle into it, and we didn’t do a very good job of that tonight.”

The trend of the game began on the first possession. Despite the Frogs’ best effort on defense, Kansas forward Chelsea Gardner hit a jumper that gave the Jayhawks a lead they never relinquished.

Kansas (18-12, 8-10 Big 12) continued an early attack, mounting a 7-0 run on hot 3-point shooting. Halfway through the first half, Kansas hit 80 percent of its shots from distance.

Kansas guard Monica Engelman led the 3-point barrage in the half, hitting both of her 3-point attempts.

TCU (9-21, 2-16) adjusted to the outside shooting by switching to a box-and-one style defense, but Kansas countered with a strong inside game, outscoring TCU in the paint 44-18 the rest of the way.

“I just think we weren’t tough enough tonight,” junior center Latricia Lovings said. “Playing them previously, we knew we had to push them around and play them hard on defense. Tonight we just didn’t play as a team and didn’t lock down on defense like we were supposed to.”

All strategy aside, TCU failed to make shots throughout the first half, hitting only 27 percent from the field to Kansas’ 47 percent.

TCU freshman Veja Hamilton provided a small spark to begin the second half, but TCU could muster little offense down the stretch, shooting 38 percent. A string of layups late helped Kansas hit 55 percent of its second-half shots and finishing at 51 percent for the game.

Kansas finished with five players in double figures, led by guard Angel Goodrich with 16. Sophomore guard Asia Boyd added 12 off the bench.

“I thought we gave Boyd what she likes to do — drive the basketball,” Mittie said. “I thought she was aggressive off the bounce tonight. We wanted to turn her into more of a perimeter player.”

In the previous games against Kansas, TCU freshman Zahna Medley, Kamy Cole and Hamilton combined to score 65.4 percent of the Frogs points. Friday, Medley finished with a game-high 21 points, followed by Hamilton with 14, but Cole was held to six.

TCU fails to advance to the postseason for the second year in a row, last making an appearance on the Women’s NIT in 2011.

Kansas St. 51, Texas 49

Brittany Chambers' layup with less than a second to play gave Kansas State the victory in the first round of the Big 12 Conference tournament Friday night.

Chambers scored 20 points and grabbed nine rebounds to lead the eighth-seeded Wildcats (15-16), whose reward is a quarterfinal game against No. 1 Baylor (29-1) today Saturday.

Three players scored all but two of Kansas State's points. Haley Texada had 19 points and Chantay Caron scored 10 for the Wildcats, with Heidi Brown's basket being the only other score. Mariah White had no points but matched Chambers with nine boards and led Kansas State with five assists.

Imani McGee-Stafford had 15 points and 10 rebounds to lead Texas (12-18), the ninth seed.

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