Saturday, the Texas Tech basketball team fell to No.2 Baylor 68-60 in a game that was there for the taking in the second half.
Chris Beard’s Texas Tech basketball team ended its gauntlet of a week on a disappointing note by falling to Baylor by eight points in Lubbock. It was a game that was there to be had but in the end, Tech couldn’t make enough key shots down the stretch to topple the undefeated Bears.
Let’s look at a few takeaways from this contest, which was one of the most entertaining and yet frustrating games of the year for fans of the Red Raiders. And we will begin by taking an optimistic view of the loss.
The Red Raiders can play with any team in the nation
According to the national media, Baylor is some type of juggernaut, a team that is going to waltz its way to a Final Four birth. I didn’t see that from the Bears on Saturday but thanks to their win, they’ll remain a goliath in the sport for now. And with that being the case, we can then say that Tech can play with, and beat, any team in the nation on any given day.
By beating No. 4 Texas on Wednesday and putting a scare into No. 2 Baylor on Saturday, the Red Raiders proved to the rest of the country that they are coming together and that they are a team that will have to be reckoned with in March.
This team held a second-half lead against the No. 2 team in the nation and for much of the second stanza, this game was a back-and-forth slugfest with the combatants trading blows like two old-school heavyweights in the middle of the ring. And Tech was able to go toe-to-toe with Baylor on a night when it didn’t play its best basketball.
For instance, the Red Raiders shot just 35.5% from the floor, had 20 turnovers, handed out just five assists, and shot a mere 14 free throws (12 below their season average). Yet, they put Baylor in an absolute dog fight for the entire night.
Now, some credit is due to Baylor for making life tougher on the Red Raiders than it usually is. They certainly are the top team in the Big 12 right now and they deserve credit for some of Tech’s struggles.
However, the Red Raiders went to battle against the No. 2 team in America on Saturday with their “B” game, and yet they had every opportunity to come away with the win. Though losing the game was a disappointment, the main takeaway for Red Raider fans should be that Tech is a team that can hang with any team in the nation, even when it doesn’t play its best.