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TCU 79, Lamar 50: Fuller, Dennis pace Frogs to victory

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TCU Basketball vs Air Force (Fort Worth, TX) 11.18.19
TCU Basketball vs Air Force (Fort Worth, TX) 11.18.19
Melissa Triebwasser

PJ Fuller scored a career-high 17 points as TCU jumped all over Lamar on Saturday afternoon, winning 79-50.

The true freshman had nine first half points and eight second half points, making seven of his nine shot attempts on the day.

Fuller had plenty of company on the stat sheet, with Kevin Samuel notching his sixth double-double of the season with ten points and 11 rebounds. RJ Nembhard was close to a triple-double, with 13 points, nine assists and seven rebounds.

14 first-half points from Edric Dennis got the Frogs going early after a slow first few minutes. Five minutes into the contest TCU trailed 12-10 and had turned it over four times. Dennis’ shot-making kept the Frogs in it early, as he paced the Frogs out to a 28-15 lead with 7:28 left in the first half.

The Frogs continued to pour it on in the last several minutes of the first half, pulling out to a 41-19 halftime lead.

Lamar struggled mightily in the first half, turning it over 13 times to just seven made baskets.

The second half was more of the same, with the Frogs maintaining a 20+ point lead for the majority of the half.

Lamar tried to make things interesting with about 10 minutes remaining, as they whittled TCU’s lead down to 56-44 with 10:19 left in the game. That would be as close as Lamar would get though, as TCU closed out the game on a 23-6 run.

The Frogs have a week off for finals now, sitting at 8-2 on the season. It’s wild to think that the Frogs could easily be 10-0 right now, if it weren’t for a legitimately crazy scoreless streak and a last-second tip in in their two losses.

Depth has stood out through the first ten games, with a deeper bench than TCU has seen in quite a while. The Frogs have a legitimate nine man rotation, and it feels like they’re starting to get comfortable with each other.

There were a lot of moving parts heading into this season, as they had to welcome three new transfers (Jaedon LeDee, Edric Dennis, and Jaire Grayer) and three true freshmen (Francisco Farabello, PJ Fuller, and Diante Smith), to join Desmond Bane, Kevin Samuel, and RJ Nembhard. When two-thirds of the team is new there will be growing pains, so to be 8-2 with a handful of non-conference games remaining should be hope-giving to fans.

TCU hosts a top-25 opponent a week from Sunday, when Xavier comes to town. The No. 23 Musketeers are 9-1, with a Saturday afternoon contest against Wake Forest.