After long wait, No. 18 Red Raiders deliver 69-49 beatdown to TCU

Red Raider Nation

Texas Tech’s Chibuzo Agbo (23), Tyreek Smith (10) and Terrence Shannon Jr. (1) walk back after a timeout during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against Texas in Lubbock, Texas, Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021. (AP Photo/Justin Rex)

LUBBOCK, Texas — Three postponements and 40 days after No. 18 Texas Tech and TCU were first supposed to face off, the teams finally did on Tuesday — and it was worth the wait for Tech fans. 

The Red Raiders blasted the Horned Frogs 69-49, improving to 16-8 on the season and 8-7 in Big 12 play. 

Kyler Edwards was the star, scoring a season high 20 points on an efficient 7-8 shooting. 

Edwards had been having a disappointing season statistically coming into Tuesday’s game. His scoring plummeted from 11.4 points per game last season to 9.3 going into Tuesday. He was shooting a decreased percentage from the field and was taking fewer shots as well.  

Tuesday, Edwards showed Texas Tech what it was missing for much of the season. He looked for his shot frequently and made it a high rate, providing a punch that Texas Tech lacked for much of Big 12 play. 

The production didn’t end with his scoring. Edwards, the last remaining member of Texas Tech’s 2019 national title runner-up team, handed out four assists as well. 

Edwards did the bulk of his work in the first half, piling up 17 points and all four assists before the halftime buzzer. He launched his 3-pointer when given space, making three of them, and made smart, off-ball cuts to the rim for easy deuces. 

Edwards wasn’t the only player to perform well in the lopsided victory. Chris Beard got contributions from up and down his roster, including a first-half steal by fan favorite Vladislav Goldin. 

The Red Raiders played well together, sharing the ball and moving without it. They shot 51.8 percent from the field and 46.2 from 3. 

The all-around effort meant less of a load on Mac McClung’s shoulders. The team built a 16-point lead before McClung flipped in a second half floater for his first points of the game. 

On the other end of the ball, the Horned Frogs struggled to get much going. They made just 38.8 percent of their shots and coughed up 15 turnovers. 

Lead guards RJ Nembhard and Mike Miles were stifled, much like Texas’ Courtney Ramey and Andrew Jones were on Saturday. Nembhard and Miles typically score better than 31 points per game combined, but posted a paltry 12 on 5-20 shooting Tuesday. 

Marcus Santos-Silva locked down the interior, posting three steals and two blocks. He contributed five offensive rebounds as well. Tyreek Smith was an effective replacement while he rested, scoring nine points and grabbing six rebounds.

No player played more than 26 minutes Tuesday, a needed breather for the high-usage Red Raiders amid a gauntlet schedule. Texas Tech played three days ago, play again Thursday after one day of rest, and close their regular season at the Big 12 champion No. 3 Baylor on Sunday. 

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