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Men’s Basketball: TCU handles Texas A&M-Commerce 77-42

On New Year’s Day, the Horned Frogs took care of business before the Big 12 gauntlet commences.

TCU defeated the Texas A&M-Commerce Lions 77-42. The Lions were the last of the Horned Frog’s non-conference opponents in what appeared to be a successful preseason schedule. TCU went 11-2 against non-conference foes, only falling to the 16th-ranked Clemson Tigers and the Diamond Head Classic Champions, the Nevada Wolfpack.

Against Texas A&M-Commerce, TCU started quickly and never looked back. The Horned Frogs rolled out their new starting lineup for the second straight game. The Horned Frogs started Avery Anderson III, Trey Tennyson, Micah Peavy, Emanuel Miller, and Ernest Udeh Jr. This quintet’s athleticism proved too much for the Lions right away, as the Horned Frogs built a 10-2 lead within the first five minutes of action.

The Horned Frogs began the game shooting 13-of-19 from the floor, with eight of the first 13 makes being layups or dunks. TCU continued their fast pace as they raced out to a 47-20 halftime lead. The 20 points TCU allowed in the first half was the lowest point total allowed in any half this season.

The Horned Frogs began the second half with a staunch defensive effort. After nearly 10 minutes of play, TCU only allowed the Lions to score two points. The Horned Frogs continued to pressure the ball and get on the break, scoring 28 fastbreak points before the 30-minute mark. Once the time clock hit zero, TCU had allowed on 42 points, the second-lowest total in any Jamie Dixon-led game.

TCU big man Udeh Jr. looked especially dominant. The Lions were unable to defend Udeh Jr.’s combination of size, athleticism, and power. He had his way with the offensive glass, hauling in 11 offensive rebounds, his career-high. Udeh Jr. also chipped in 13 points to go along with his 18 rebounds. Monday marked the big man’s first career double-double.

An impressive outing just before conference play bodes well for the Horned Frogs’ future endeavors. TCU’s next game comes against Hunter Dickinson and the second-ranked Kansas Jayhawks. Dickinson is a one-man wrecking crew, averaging 18.5 points and 12.5 rebounds on the year.

In addition to Udeh Jr., the rest of the Horned Frogs starters turned in quality performances. Each starter scored in double-digits against the Lions. Miller scored 10, Anderson III had 13, Tennyson put up 11, and Peavy also ended up 11. Despite the even performances, the Horned Frogs once again failed to score efficiently. TCU only made 3-of-15 3-pointers and shot 50 percent from the charity stripe. Oddly enough, Tennyson was the only Horned Frog to make a 3-pointer, as he went 3-of-6 from downtown.

The Horned Frogs returned the Schollmaier for the first time since Nov. 27. However, the return will be short-lived as TCU plays Kansas in Lawrence, at the vaunted Allen Fieldhouse. Kansas will be TCU’s second ranked opponent of the season. But, the Jayhawks surely won’t be the last. The Horned Frogs play three straight ranked opponents, all of whom are ranked 11th or better in the polls.