TCU’s perimeter defense shines in NIT semifinals

TCU men’s basketball coach Jamie Dixon cited the Horned Frogs’ perimeter defensive as one of the primary factors in helping TCU rally from a halftime deficit to a 68-53 victory in Tuesday’s NIT semifinals game against Central Florida in Madison Square Garden.

The Horned Frogs (23-15) advanced to Thursday’s championship game against Georgia Tech (7 p.m., ESPN). To get there, the Frogs limited the Knights to a 1-for-14 shooting performance from beyond the arc after UCF had made 5-of-11 from long range in the opening half. TCU held UCF to 24 percent shooting from beyond the arc in the contest (6-of-25), including a paltry 7.1 percent in the second half.

“They made some shots early that we thought we guarded well,” Dixon said. “We didn’t think they could sustain it. They were 1-for-14 (from 3-point range) in the second half and I don’t think they really had a good look. I thought that really, really was the big difference in the game.”

Jimmy Burch: 817-390-7760, @Jimmy_Burch