Fort Worth, TX - TCU extended its nation-best win streak to 17 games on Friday night, and moved to 12-0 on the season, with an 86-75 win over William & Mary.
With Kenrich Williams out due to a knee bruise, Alex Robinson and Jaylen Fisher stepped up, scoring 23 and 21 points respectively. For Fisher, his 21 points was a career-high, and he also added five rebounds and three assists to the mix.
Robinson and Fisher combined to shoot 17-27 from the floor, while as a team TCU shot 61.8% from the floor. Three other Horned Frogs also found double-digits, as JD Miller scored 12, while Desmond Bane and Vladimir Brodziansky both scored 11. Bane also had a team-leading eight rebounds, as the Frogs out-boarded the Tribe 39-22.
One player stood out to Coach Dixon after the game, though.
“We don’t win that game without Shawn Olden,” Dixon told the media in his postgame conference.
Olden would go scoreless, but his four rebounds and five assists were big in place of Kenrich Williams, as TCU would continually go with a three-guard lineup throughout the night.
For William & Mary, the night was all about shooting the three. The Tribe attempted 38 three-pointers on the night, making 15 of them. Matt Milon was especially proficient from behind the arc, making six of his 11 attempts and leading William & Mary with 22 points on the night.
Both teams struggled from the floor early, starting a combined 3-13. TCU would pick things up quickly, thanks to Alex Robinson and Jaylen Fisher, and pull out to a 9-3 lead at the under-16 mark. The two guards would score seven of TCU’s first nine points, while also pulling down three rebounds.
William & Mary would struggle through the first five minutes, going just 1-9 from the floor, including 1-6 from three. The Tribe would pick up their shooting a bit, knocking down a few more threes and keeping TCU close a the under-12 timeout in the first half. Two free throws from Matt Milon would cut TCU’s lead to 15-13.
The Frogs would continue to hold a lead, but couldn’t seem to pull away. William & Mary’s three-point shooting, while more volume-based than accurate, kept the Tribe in things throughout the remainder of the first half. TCU led 30-23 with 4:30 remaining, before Connor Burchfield would hit the Tribe’s sixth three of the night.
William & Mary would attempt 22 first-half three pointers, connecting on seven. TCU, meanwhile, was 0-10 from deep in the first half, and carried a 36-31 lead into the break.
The Frogs wouldn’t be able to create much more separation in the second half, as they largely just traded baskets with William & Mary through the first portion of the second half.
The Frogs would briefly lead by double-digits, but a Paul Rowley three for the Tribe would cut TCU’s lead to 58-54. A Jaylen Fisher three, his second of the night, would put TCU back up 61-54.
The threes kept raining for William & Mary, as their 27th attempt would go down, cutting TCU’s lead back to four, 61-57.
TCU would see their lead shrink to two with under six minutes remaining, 70-68, before a Fisher three would bring a shot of life to the building. A quick TCU 7-2 run would help extend TCU’s lead, but they wouldn’t fully put William & Mary away until there was less than a minute left.
With the Frogs leading 77-72, and just 3:30 remaining in the game, TCU would get the ball out of a timeout. An Alex Robinson miss as the shot clock expired gave way to another opportunity for William & Mary to close the game to one possession, but the Tribe would come up short on a three.
Ultimately, though, TCU would prove to be too much for the Tribe. Free throws from Fisher and Robinson late, plus some tough rebounding by Vlad, would help TCU move to 12-0 on the season.
TCU now enters Big 12 play, where we’ll get a great picture of exactly how good the Frogs are. TCU will take a brief break for Christmas, before getting four days of practice in ahead of hosting Oklahoma on December 30th.
Check out the full postgame comments below from Jaylen Fisher, Alex Robinson, and Coach Dixon.