Isaacs scores 19 points as No. 23 Texas Tech rallies from 10 down to beat TCU 82-81

LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) — Pop Isaacs scored 19 points and put 23rd-ranked Texas Tech ahead to stay with a three-point play with 39 seconds remaining as the Red Raiders rallied from a double-digit deficit and beat TCU 82-81 on Tuesday night.

Texas Tech (19-7, 8-5 Big 12) trailed 69-59 with 6:55 left. Isaacs scored nine of his points after that, including two free throws with 12 seconds left. The Red Raiders’ leading scorer for the season was 4-of-11 shooting from the field, and missed all five of his 3-pointers, but made 11 of 12 free throws.

“I was really thrilled with the way Pop competed,” said Tech coach Grant McCasland, also pointing out the guard’s six defensive rebounds. “I just felt like he was engaged in winning.”

Darrion Williams, Joe Toussaint and Kerwin Walton each had 14 points for the Red Raiders, who matched ninth-ranked Kansas and No. 11 Baylor for third place in the Big 12 standings — the top four teams get a double-bye into the quarterfinal round of the 14-team conference tournament next month.

Emanuel Miller and Avery Anderson III each had 15 points to lead six players scoring in double figures for TCU (18-8, 7-6). Miller also had 12 rebounds. Jameer Nelson Jr. scored 14 points, while Micah Peavy, Jakobe Coles and Essam Mostafa each had 10.

Isaacs’ three-point play broke the game’s 11th and final tie. He had also snapped the 10th tie with two free throws with 1:27 left.

In their game-ending 23-12 run, the Red Raiders got their points on five layups, a dunk and 11 free throws — seven by Isaacs and four by Toussaint.

“I gotta give them credit they made the free throws,” TCU coach Jamie Dixon said. “Made every free throw down the stretch, simply put.”

TCU was up 69-59 after a layup by Peavy, but then missed eight consecutive shots over nearly four minutes before Peavy scored again.

Soon after that, Williams took a bounce pass from Toussaint and had a slam dunk with 2:25 left to tie the game at 73 — the first time the score was even after halftime.

Toussaint finished with seven assists and only one turnover while playing 36 minutes.

Nelson came up short on a 3-pointer with a second left that would have tied the game before Coles’ putback basket.Nelson had three 3s after halftime, three days after his step-back 3 with 1.1 seconds left gave the Frogs a win at Kansas State.

There were eight times in the first half, including 38-all at the break.

TCU led 36-28 after Anderson’s three-point play with 2:44 left. He had 13 points in the half, but the Red Raiders closed with a 10-2 run and were even after Issacs made two free throws in the final minute.


TCU: A tough loss after the Frogs had won three of their previous four Big 12 road games. TCU out-rebounded the Red Raiders 49-36 and finished with a 38-19 advantage in bench points. ... Mostafa 10 points came on 5-of-5 shooting before halftime. He made only four total field goals his previous 13 games, with none in the previous nine.

Texas Tech: The Red Raiders are 14-1 at home, where eight days earlier they posted a 79-50 win over Kansas. ... Tech played its second game in a row without 7-foot Warren Washington, whose right foot was in a walking boot. He got hurt in the Kansas game.


TCU has two home games in three days, Saturday vs. Cincinnati (16-9, 5-7) and Monday night against No. 11 Baylor.

Texas Tech plays Saturday at UCF (13-12, 4-9), which has a four-game losing streak that began with a 66-59 loss in Lubbock on Feb. 10.


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