EditorsNote: updates second graf with West Virginia’s win
Keenan Evans scored 25 points, including two baskets and a pair of free throws in the final two minutes, to help push No. 14 Texas Tech to a 73-69 win over Texas on Thursday in a Big 12 tournament quarterfinal game at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo.
The Red Raiders, seeded second in this event, will play No. 18 West Virginia in Friday’s second semifinal. The Mountaineers defeated Baylor 78-65 on Thursday. No. 9 Kansas will play Kansas State in the other Big 12 semifinal.
Texas Tech led by as many as 14 points in the second half before the Longhorns clawed back, with a dunk by Mohamed Bamba with 2:32 to play cutting the advantage to 64-61. Evans then hit a jumper and two free throws to give the Red Raiders some breathing room, and they made the plays they needed down the stretch to capture the victory and advance.
Jarrett Culver, with 13 points, was the only other player in double-figure scoring for Texas Tech (24-8). Culver also took 11 rebounds for the Red Raiders, who outshot Texas 47.3 percent-43.1 percent (including a 9-of-16 showing on its 3-pointers) and outrebounded the Longhorns 37-28.
Jacob Young poured in a career-high 29 points to lead all scorers, while Texas (19-14) also got 20 points from Matt Coleman. Bamba, who had missed the past three and a half games with an injured toe, scored 10 points for the Longhorns.
Texas Tech scored the game’s first nine points and never looked back, getting balanced scoring led by the seven points apiece from Culver and Evans in the first half and carrying a 35-28 lead into halftime.
Coleman led the Longhorns with 10 points in the half while Young hit for nine.
Both teams struggled from the floor, with the Red Raiders outshooting Texas 39.3 percent-35.4 percent in the first half and forging a 22-15 advantage on the glass. The Longhorns missed their first nine shots from the floor and didn’t score until a jumper by Kerwin Roach II at the 14:42 mark of the opening half.
The Red Raiders took an 11-point lead on a dunk by Evans with 13:45 to play. But Texas answered with back-to-back 3-pointers as part of nine consecutive points from Young and pulled to within 53-49 with 11:03 remaining, setting up another down-to-the-wire finish.
—Field Level Media