TCU Falls To No. 24 Cincinnati, 89-74
Feb. 26, 2005
By STEPHEN HAWKINS
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) - Jihad Muhammad had 21 points and No. 24 Cincinnati overcame 22 turnovers by shooting a season-best 61 percent in a 89-74 win over TCU on Saturday.
Cincinnati (21-6, 10-4 Conference USA) took the lead for good by ending the first half with a 12-3 run, then started after halftime with a 12-4 spurt. Eight different players scored in that stretch.
Nick Williams had 14 points and six assists, and James White had 16 points for the Bearcats, who made 30 of 49 shots to counter the turnovers that matched a season worst for the second time in three games. Jason Maxiell had 11 points and 11 rebounds.
The Horned Frogs (17-11, 7-7), looking for their first NCAA tournament berth since 1998, missed a chance to make a strong late-season statement. Like Cincinnati, TCU had won four of its previous five games.
Corey Santee scored TCU's first 10 points, with a pair of 3-pointers before Cincinnati even scored. But the Frogs couldn't maintain that momentum.
TCU is 11-85 all-time against ranked teams, 1-12 in three seasons under Neil Dougherty.
Muhammad made consecutive 3-pointers to tie the game at 21-all with 8:51 left in the first half. White then turned consecutive TCU turnovers into baskets to cap the 12-2 run and give the Bearcats their first lead.
Six minutes later, Muhammad's jumper broke a 31-31 tie and put the Bearcats ahead to stay. The lead was 40-34 at halftime, and grew to 52-38 after Williams made two free throws with 16:05 left.
Cincinnati had six of its turnovers in the first seven minutes, and TCU had a 14-9 lead.
The Frogs had their largest lead at 19-13 when Curtis drove the left side of the lane for a one-handed slam. Then came the first significant run by Cincinnati in which Muhammad had his consecutive 3-pointers.
TCU has never won in five games against Cincinnati, including their three games as Conference USA opponents and an NCAA first-round game in 1959.