While the final score looked like a blowout, the game was much closer than it appears until the end. The Frogs fought, but came up short, against a very good team.
AJ Alix scored 21 points for the Horned Frogs (12-12, 4-9), whose first conference winning streak ended at two games with their 22nd consecutive loss to Baylor. The past 10 have been since TCU joined its former Southwest Conference opponent in the Big 12.
The talent is there, but TCU still is still a few pieces away from being able to compete with the big boys of the Big 12.
The Frogs trimmed the deficit to eight early in the fourth quarter on Amy Okonkwo’s 3-pointer, but Baylor responded with seven quick points on second-chance opportunities to make it 70-55 with 8:30 to play. On an afternoon when it took all TCU had to stay close, the Frogs couldn’t put together a late run to make it close against Baylor.
“It’s hard; we’ve got to work, though,” Alix said of battling for rebounds against Baylor. “We can make it happen. We’ve just got to work for them.”
It was by far the worst performance of the year for a team that seemed to be hitting their stride. The good news is, losing to a top ten team on the road shouldn’t hurt them much.
The 18-point margin marked TCU’s most lopsided loss under first-year coach Jamie Dixon, who was less than pleased that his team was outrebounded by a 36-26 margin in a contest that included the Frogs’ lowest-scoring half of the season (17 points, first half).
“We certainly got what we deserved,” Dixon said. “In my mind, we should have come out here and played better than what we did.”
Wednesday’s game against the Cowboys is going to be huge for the Frogs.
TCU was looking for a resume-bolstering win against the Bears, but were unable to get one. If the Frogs are hoping for a NCAA tournament spot, the Frogs need a win against Oklahoma State on Wednesday. Last time the Frogs and Cowboys faced off TCU lost 76-89. A win on Wednesday could keep them in the running.