Eddie Lampkin didn’t get nervous late in the game, even though it looked like TCU basketball could be headed toward another meltdown in the final minutes.
This city has not been kind to the Horned Frogs over the years and they’ve been prone to letting leads slip away in this state. A couple of weeks ago, Oklahoma State rallied back from nine down in the final three minutes to pull off a stunning victory in Stillwater.
History did not repeat itself on Monday night. Oklahoma made it interesting late, but TCU eventually pulled away for a 72-63 victory at the Lloyd Noble Center.
“We ain’t giving up the lead,” said Lampkin, who had his third career double-double with a career-high 14 points and 10 rebounds. “We couldn’t give up the lead. We made history today so we couldn’t give up the lead.”
Yes, TCU accomplished another program first under Jamie Dixon. The Frogs won for the first time in Norman, entering the game 0-14 in trips to OU. The Sooners also held a 27-4 edge in the all-time series.
Lampkin said everybody mentioned TCU’s dubious road and all-time record against OU going into the game.
“We knew that. Everybody kept saying it,” Lampkin said. “All the strength coaches, everybody, we’ve never won here, 0-14, leading the all-time series. Still, we got the win. That’s all that matters.”
The Frogs (15-4, 4-3 Big 12) pulled off the regular-season series sweep of the Sooners and earned a coveted “Quad 1” victory for the NCAA’s NET rankings that weigh heavily when it comes to NCAA Tournament bids.
OU (13-9, 3-6 Big 12) has lost six of its last seven.
TCU was in control much of the game, leading by as many as 11 in the first half before that lead dwindled to one point by halftime. But the Frogs never trailed in the second half and used a 9-0 run to build a 52-42 lead with just under 12 minutes left.
The Sooners threatened late, though, as the Frogs struggled to put it away. OU cut the deficit to 68-61 with one minute left and then made it 68-63 with 38 seconds left following a missed free throw by Mike Miles. TCU then had a turnover, giving OU a chance to make it a one possession game.
But the Sooners’ Jordan Goldwire missed a 3-pointer with 25 seconds left. Frogs guard Damion Baugh pulled down the rebound and proceeded to make a couple of free throws with 23 seconds left. Then Micah Peavy made two free throws with 15.9 seconds left to seal the victory.
Baugh said the team had a simple message late in the game.
“Hey, basketball is a game of runs and they run and hit us with their best shot,” Baugh said. “So we have to keep playing.”
Baugh finished the night with a game-high 20 points. It’s his second 20-point performance of the season with the other being a career-high 23 points in TCU’s victory over Iowa State nine days ago.
Baugh finished several times at the rim, contributing to TCU’s 42-32 advantage from points in the paint.
“People scout me to be a pass-first (guard), so when I get in the lane, they expect me to pass and the rim is wide open,” Baugh said.
Outside of the inside scoring differential, TCU dominated the rebounding battle 42-20. In its 59-58 overtime victory over OU on Jan. 15 in Fort Worth, TCU won the rebounding battle by one (37-36).
“Out-rebounded them by 22,” Dixon said. “That’s what we set out to do. It had to be double digits.”
TCU returns to action with a home game against Kansas State (10-10, 2-6 Big 12) on Saturday. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. at Schollmaier Arena.
This story was originally published January 31, 2022 10:16 PM.