TCU overcomes mistakes, scrappy South Dakota to improve to 3-0

TCU guard Alex Robinson, right, scored seven points Wednesday night as the Horned Frogs slipped past South Dakota and Dan Jech 76-71.
TCU guard Alex Robinson, right, scored seven points Wednesday night as the Horned Frogs slipped past South Dakota and Dan Jech 76-71. Special to the Star-Telegram

The TCU men’s basketball team won for a third consecutive game to start the season, winning despite 16 turnovers and beating back a good South Dakota team 76-71 on Wednesday night at Schollmaier Arena.

Vladimir Brodziansky scored a team-high 23 points, including a hook in the lane at 23.1 seconds that put the dagger in the Coyotes.

The Horned Frogs moved to 3-0 and extended a winning streak to eight games, dating to last season’s NIT championship run.

“We knew they were good, we knew they were well coached. Old, experienced and used to winning,” TCU coach Jamie Dixon said. “We made some plays down the stretch, but certainly not happy with how we played, especially offensively. The 16 turnovers stand out.”

Kouat Noi added 14 for the Frogs, who shot 47 percent, including 40 percent from 3-point range. Noi and Brodziansky each hit two key free throws in the final two minutes. Desmond Bane had 10 for the Frogs

Kenrich Williams led TCU with a game-high nine rebounds. TCU outrebounded the Coyotes by 12.

The Coyotes (2-1) brought with them 11 returning lettermen, including three starters from a 22-12 team that won the Summit League before losing in the first round of the NIT.

Among them was crafty sophomore guard Matt Mooney, a shrewd operator on the floor by any standard at this level, who had a game-high 31 points, including nine in the first three minutes of the second half that cut into TCU’s nine-point halftime lead.

The Frogs built up their advantage to 11 early in the second half, but Mooney and the Coyotes nibbled away at it. Helping them was a stretch of 3:05 in which TCU went without a field goal in the second half.

Mooney’s jumper at 3:52 closed TCU’s lead to two, 68-66, and his jumper at the three-minute mark tied the game.

“I want to give them credit,” Dixon said. “They played well. We knew how good Mooney was and you guys got to witness. That’s a good player.”

The game marked TCU’s third in six days, and the Frogs appeared a little sluggish to start, opening with five turnovers in the game’s first seven minutes.

Noi had 10 points in 10 minutes in the first half to spark the Frogs.

Bane’s 3-pointer at the 6:41 mark represented the game’s third lead change, putting the Frogs up 26-24. Jaylen Fisher’s layup off an assist from Alex Robinson in transition increased the lead to four.

The Coyotes scored the next four to tie the game at 28 before TCU found a rhythm, closing the last 4:47 of the half on a 14-5 run.

When Robinson (seven points) and JD Miller hit consecutive 3-pointers followed by Brodziansky’s layup to finish the run, the Frogs had a 42-33 lead at the half.

“We’re still finding ourselves,” Dixon said. “I thought we would play better than we played tonight. The turnovers early really set the tone for us.

“A good win for us. It’s a building block.”

The TCU Horned Frogs received their NIT championship rings before the season opener against ULM, celebrating their title in coach Jamie Dixon's first year.

TCU announced a new fundraising effort on Tuesday to make several major additions to the Amon G. Carter Stadium. Take a look at the renderings of the new seats, suites and other updated and upgraded places. Contingent on the speed of the fundraisi


SOUTH DAKOTA (2-1): Burch-Manning 1-3 0-0 2, Hagedorn 8-18 3-4 22, Hurst 2-3 1-2 5, Simpson 3-10 0-0 6, Mooney 12-22 3-4 31, Jech 0-1 0-0 0, Fuller 1-2 0-0 2, Sparks 0-0 0-0 0, Doss 0-0 0-0 0, Peterson 0-1 0-0 0, Armstrong 1-1 0-0 3. Totals 28-61 7-10 71.

TCU (3-0): Miller 2-6 1-2 6, Brodziansky 8-15 6-7 23, Bane 4-5 0-0 10, K.Williams 2-7 2-2 7, Robinson 2-8 2-2 7, Hamdy 1-2 0-0 2, Noi 5-7 2-2 14, Fisher 3-8 0-0 7. Totals 27-58 13-15 76.

Halftime—TCU 42-33. 3-Point Goals—South Dakota 8-24 (Mooney 4-11, Hagedorn 3-6, Armstrong 1-1, Jech 0-1, Peterson 0-1, Simpson 0-4), TCU 9-22 (Bane 2-2, Noi 2-4, Robinson 1-1, Miller 1-3, K.Williams 1-3, Fisher 1-4, Brodziansky 1-5). Fouled Out—Burch-Manning. Rebounds—South Dakota 24 (Hagedorn 5), TCU 34 (K.Williams 9). Assists—South Dakota 18 (Simpson 5), TCU 20 (Fisher 5). Total Fouls—South Dakota 14, TCU 9.

Related stories from Fort Worth Star Telegram