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Defense Propels TCU to 71-60 Win over Illinois State

TCU takes home the third place medal in the Cancun Challenge after a dominant defensive performance propelled the Frogs to a 71-60 win over Illinois State.

Ray Carlin-USA TODAY Sports

The TCU defense has had enough with the two-game losing streak. The Frogs completely shut down the Illinois State Redbirds in a 71-60 win in the Third Place Game of the 2015 Cancun Challenge. TCU held ISU to just 36.4% shooting from the floor, including 3/18 from behind the arc. The 60 points allowed by the Frogs was a season-low.

On the offensive end, Malique Trent shined once again, scoring a career high 19 points on 7/12 shooting. He also hit three deep balls and committed three steals. Vladimir Brodziansky finished one rebound shy of a double-double with 16 points and nine boards in 31 minutes of action. Karviar Shepherd was the third double-digit scorer for the Frogs, adding 15 points on 6/9 shooting with three rebounds.

Perhaps the most impressive performance for TCU tonight came from Michael Williams. He didn't light up the stat sheet, but he excelled in his role as the top point guard as Chauncey Collins and Malique Trent sat with foul issues. Williams played 25 minutes in the game, mostly in the first half, and was a true leader for the Frogs while he was on the floor. He ran the offense efficiently and set up scoring plays left and right. Williams finished with four points, five assists, three rebounds, and most impressively, just one turnover on the night.

Brandon Parrish scored eight points, including a pair of threes, and grabbed five rebounds. JD Miller scored six points and grabbed five boards off the bench. Chauncey Collins had a tournament to forget, scoring just one point on 0/5 shooting in 16 minutes of play tonight.

As a team, TCU had their best shooting night of the season, finishing 50.9% from the field on 27/53 shooting. The Frogs were also 6/17 from behind the arc and 11/17 from the line. TCU held a narrow 34-33 advantage on the boards.

Illinois State led 5-3 in the opening minutes of the game, but that was about as impressive as the Redbirds would look all night long. Once TCU seized a double-digit lead midway through the first half, they held it. Turnovers and fouls kept an ice cold Illinois State team relatively close for most of the game. The Frogs committed 18 turnovers and 22 team fouls, leading to 27 free throw attempts for ISU.

Lee Paris, DeVaughn Akoon-Purcell, and Roland Griffin were the only offensive threats for Illinois State on the night. The trio combined for 41 of the team's 60 points.

The Frogs will get a week off before returning to the floor on December 2 for a home contest against 25th-ranked SMU. Tipoff in that contest is set for 7:00 PM at the Wilkerson-Greines Activity Center.