- Associated Press - Saturday, February 1, 2014

LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) - Dejan Kravic came on strong for Texas Tech by scoring 12 of his 18 points in the second half and grabbing six rebounds to help the Red Raiders escape with a 60-54 win over TCU on Saturday.

“That was the game plan, play inside out,” Kravic said. “Get it inside and if they double-team, kick it out.”

Jaye Crockett tacked on 15 points, six rebounds and five assists for the Red Raiders and Dusty Hannahs scored 11 points.

“That was an ugly win,” Crockett said. “It was very ugly. We had a good practice coming back from Kansas State and we kind of figured we’d come out with more energy and it was kind of bad coming out that way, we just came out way too slow.”

TCU led most of the game, in large part to Kyan Anderson’s 22 points and five rebounds, before the Red Raiders pulled away late in the second half. Amric Fields added seven rebounds for the Horned Frogs.

A Kravic layup with 7:43 regained the lead for the Red Raiders. The Horned Frogs fought back, tying it twice, but couldn’t get over the hump as Hannahs, Crockett and Kravic defended their home court.

“I think we were just converting,” Crockett said. “We were forcing a lot of turnovers and we were converting on those turnovers and we were just hitting our free throws when we needed to and guys were just making plays when we needed to make plays. We shot horrible from the field, especially in the first half, and we just started making shots in the second half.”

Texas Tech (11-11, 3-6 Big 12) swept TCU (9-11, 0-8), as it did last season. With the win, Texas Tech has already matched its Big 12 victory total from last season, with nine conference games remaining.

“It’s disappointing, but at this point in time we can’t get down,” Anderson said. “Right now we’re just trying to stay as positive as possible. It does hurt, I feel like we let one get away from us, especially with turnovers.”

TCU, leading 28-27 at halftime, came out of the break strong and built the lead to as many as eight on an Anderson free throw with 15:28 left in the game. From that point, Kravic led the charge back for the Red Raiders and Robert Turner made 1 of 2 free throws to tie it at 40.

“I thought Dejan’s play was very critical during that time, he got a couple of ‘and-ones’ where he got fouled when he was shooting and scored, then he made his free throws,” Texas Tech coach Tubby Smith said. “I think he was huge and Jaye, Jaye logged a lot of minutes today, 35. Both he and Toddrick (Gotcher) we’re critical. I thought they made plays during that time and it was our defense. We changed our defense some and went to a zone-type defense.”

The Red Raiders forced 11 of 20 TCU turnovers in the second half.

“I thought Texas Tech caused some problems with their pressure,” TCU coach Trent Johnson said. “I thought they did a good job of trying to wear us down and get us out of rhythm. Obviously, it’s no secret, we’re not very deep and I thought that took its toll on us at crucial times.

“A lot of that was caused by them and a lot of it was caused by fatigue. We couldn’t rebound when we needed to.”

Anderson captured the lead again for TCU on a three-point play with 11:59 left.

Gotcher put Texas Tech back up with 10:49 to go.

TCU tied it twice in the final 8:07 but couldn’t regain the lead as Texas Tech built its advantage to nine points on a Kravic free throw with 15 seconds to go.

Christian Gore hit a 3-pointer for TCU with 7 seconds to go for the final score.

“We were able to escape today,” Smith said. “I like our guys. I say escape because we shot the ball so poorly in the first half and they really didn’t shoot much better in the second half but we found a way to win this. That’s a good sign, because we’ve gone the other way also when games have been on the line like this.”



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