Texas Tech Basketball Overcomes Slow Start to Move to Round of 32
Texas Tech would start with the lead thanks to a couple of quick buckets from Norense Odiase. After the quick start, Texas Tech would trade buckets with Northern Kentucky for the rest of the first half. It was an ugly half of basketball from both the Red Raiders and the Norse, but it was Texas Tech who had the lead going into the break, 30-26.
The second half was all Texas Tech, with the Red Raiders outscoring the Norse by 11 in the second half to win by a comfortable 15-point margin, 72-57.
Jarrett Culver flirted with a triple-double, but ultimately ended with 29 points, 7 assists and 9 rebounds. Matt Mooney added 9 points with 5 steals and 8 assists, Tariq Owens added 12 points with a record-setting 5 blocks and Davide Moretti added 10 points.
How was Owens' 5 blocks record-setting? No other Red Raider had even four in an NCAA Tournament game.
Not only was Tariq's 5-blocks a record performance for Texas Tech, but Jarrett Culver's 29 points was also the most scored by a Red Raider in the NCAA Tournament.
Defensively, the Red Raiders chose two Norsemen and shut them down completely, daring Tyler Sharpe to beat them alone. He had a valiant effort, but his 23 points weren't enough. The Horizon League Player of the Year, Drew McDonald, was outmatched physically, getting held 14 points under his season average.
Texas Tech will now play the winner between Buffalo and Arizona State on Sunday, March 24th in the round of 32.