The Horned Frogs chose a great time to find its range from beyond the three-point arc, making a season-high 11 shots from long range to lead TCU to a run-away victory over 12th-ranked Kansas State Wildcats in the Big 12 Tournament Quarterfinals. TCU fell into an early hole with a sluggish start, giving K-State a nine-point advantage in the opening minutes. TCU was able to quickly overcome that deficit, taking a lead it would not surrender with six minutes remaining in the first half. Mike Miles and Chuck O’Bannon led the charge for the Frogs, with 22 points a piece, on a combined 8-14 from long range. The Horned Frogs entered the game ranked 354th in 3-point percentage, making just 29.6% per game, but in T-Mobile Arena on Thursday TCU made 44% from distance.
It was O’Bannon’s best game of the season, contributing seven rebounds and eclipsing his season-high scoring by 10 points, coming just one point shy of a career high 23 points he had in the 2022 NCAA Tournament game against the Arizona Wildcats.
Jamie Dixon said Chuck O'Bannon is Mr. Postseason and that "It's his time, it's our time."— S. Johnson (@StevenMJohnson_) March 10, 2023
Even without big man Eddie Lampkin, who has stepped away from the team for personal reasons, TCU was able to clean up on the offensive glass as 14 offensive rebounds created 25 second-chance points. This effort was led by Xavier Cork’s four OREBs and an emphatic Emanuel Miller put back jam
BIG time putback dunk by Emanuel Miller @TCUBasketball pic.twitter.com/p7YtKtwLf9— NCAA March Madness (@MarchMadnessMBB) March 10, 2023
The Horned Frogs also put forward an excellent defensive effort to hold the First Team All-Conference combination of Markquis Nowell & Keyontae Johnson to 25 total points on 11-25 shooting, with Nowell shooting just 1-9 on threes and Johnson fouling out with over six minutes remaining. TCU’s menacing defense forced 20 Wildcat turnovers, generating 20 Horned Frog points.
Kansas State falls to 23-9 on the season, failing to win a game in the Big 12 Tournament for the second straight season. The Wildcats will now await Selection Sunday to learn where it will be playing in the NCAA Tournament and if this loss will drop it from a projected 3-seed.
TCU improves to 21-11 overall, picking up a 10th Big 12 win and 8th NET Quadrant 1 win. Only seven teams nationally have more Quad 1 wins, 3 of which are the other Big 12 Semifinalists. The Frogs advance to the Big 12 Semifinal for the second straight season where it will match up with the #7 Texas Longhorns, Friday March 10 at 8:30 PM. TCU is looking to advance to its first ever Big 12 Championship.