No. 24 TCU comes up short in close loss to No. 3 Kansas

TCU fell short in completing the first season sweep of Kansas in program history.

The Horned Frogs had their chances late, but fell 63-58 to the Jayhawks on Monday night.

The game lived up to the billing as TCU trailed by a point, 54-43, with 6:38 remaining in the game. It was much different game than the blowout in Lawrence on Jan. 21 when the Horned Frogs won by 23, but the game was still within reach.

But TCU went on a scoring drought of nearly three minutes while Kansas used a 6-0 to build the lead to 60-53 with 4:41 remaining. Damion Baugh broke the scoring drought finishing a layup inside off a pass from Eddie Lampkin.

The Horned Frogs used their defense to battle back to make it 61-58 with roughly a minute to go. Mike Miles Jr. had an attempt inside to cut it one, but his basket fell short. With 35.4 TCU had one more chance to tie, but Damion Baugh’s layup was blocked and a jump ball was called in favor of Kansas.

The game wasn’t over yet as Kansas star Jalen Wilson missed the front end of the free throws. Baugh’s 3-pointer to tie it fell short and Kansas retook possession with just over a second remaining.

Miles led TCU with 13 points while JaKobe Coles added 12 points off the bench.

Gradey’s day

Kansas freshman Gradey Dick was a non-factor the first time these two teams clashed. The former five-star was determined to not let that happen again. Dick was hot early and scored or assisted on 12 of the Jayhawks first 14 points.

Dick nailed two 3-pointers in the opening seven minutes of the game, but missed a significant chunk of the first half with foul trouble. When he returned to the court, Dick hadn’t cooled off as he rebounded his own miss for a putback dunk to give Kansas a 31-29 lead just before halftime.

After scoring 14 in the first 20 minutes, Dick scored five more quickly in the first 2:01 of the second half including a 3-pointer that gave the Jayhawks a 38-32 lead. Dick didn’t score another point as Baugh took the matchup personally to slow him down.

When he was taken away, Kevin McCullar stepped up for the Jayhawks with 15 points and a key defensive block on Baugh in the final seconds.

Early nerves

The environment at Schollmaier Arena was electric with a near sellout crowd that featured former TCU stars Desmond Bane and Kenrich Williams. More than three dozen NBA scouts from 20 teams were in attendance. The early spotlight got to TCU as the Horned Frogs missed their first shots.

You could tell TCU was amped up and Kansas took advantage by jumping out to a 7-0 lead. Emanuel Miller broke the drought with two straight baskets. Miller’s buckets helped TCU settle in and the Horned Frogs would late use a 8-2 run to take their first lead of the game, 17-16, midway through the first half.

The two teams battled the rest of the way, exchanging leads and highlight plays along the way. The Jayhawks took a narrow 33-29 halftime lead after holding TCU to just 32% shooting from the floor.