Cue the Matador song, our Texas Tech Red Raiders have finally accomplished the daunting task of winning their first Big 12 Matchup of the season against thirteenth ranked Iowa State Cyclones at the United Supermarkets Arena in Lubbock, TX.
The Raiders kept things as close in the first half then on the heels of Caleb Grills 24 points the Cyclones took off to a twenty three point lead in the second half. Grills was deadly from three and no matter what Texas Tech threw at him he seemed to find the bottom of the net.
Head coach Mark Adams of Texas Tech was grabbing at straws last night after an 0-8 start to conference play and two starters, Pop Isaacs and Fardaws Amaq, had to sit out due to injuries. Adams was looking to his entire team to step up and be the spark that this team needed to get a win.
The game was a team effort between those on the court and the fanbase with every player playing double digit minutes except Last Chance U stand out K.J. Allen on eight minutes of action. The big three of Texas Tech were lights out as usual. Kevin Obanor (24), Jaylon Tyson (11), and Devion Harmon (16) combined for 51 points.
Texas Tech Proves Durable
The modus operandi of the Red Raiders this season has been the tale of two halves. The team will play relatively close first halves then proceed to be blown out in the second half. The same was true for this game, the Cyclones went on a run leading to a twenty-three point deficit at the midway point of the half. Adams’ Red Raiders held the line though, through constant pressure on defense and smart team offense. The Red Raiders slowly chipped away at the lead and with 21 seconds left they tied it at 71 a piece sending it to overtime.
The energy was easy to read and you could tell Texas Tech wanted this game more. The Red Raiders fed off of the energy of the almost 11,000 fans in attendance during this time. Texas Tech took the lead and held it through the entirety of the overtime period. The fans had no problem taking their credit for the win as the students of Texas Tech rushed the court to celebrate their team’s historic comeback victory.
This comeback matches the BYU Cougars 23 point comeback in November to beat the Dayton Flyers. This historic night will also go down as the largest comeback in Texas Tech history which replaces the 17 point comeback against Nevada in 1997.
“I’m still in shock here… I was just so proud of our guys,” stated Adams after the victory. “They didn’t give up on themselves. I was proud of the fans. I was afraid they were going to leave at halftime.”
Texas Tech is the school of West Texas people, this team showed the blue collar culture of its region.
The Red Raider’s schedule doesn’t get any easier in the coming days as they continue the difficult task of getting wins in the cut throat Big XII, which currently has six teams sitting in the top twenty of NCAA Division I Men’s basketball. Texas Tech will look to capitalize on this huge win and let the momentum carry them to more victories in enemy territory with three of the next four opponents being ranked.
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