This team has to figure out how to play better in the first half
Once again on Saturday, Tech put itself in a hole in the first half of a game. The same could be said of Wednesday’s game at Texas (when Tech trailed by 10 points at the break), as well as the Oklahoma State loss (when Tech was down nine points at the break), and the Houston game (which Tech trailed by 18 points at halftime).
In this game, the Red Raiders trailed Baylor 26-18 after 20 minutes of play. And in that first half, Tech might have played it’s worst stretch of basketball of the year.
Shooting only 8-30 from the field (26.7%) and 2-12 from 3-point range (16.7%), Tech couldn’t throw the ball into Lake Alan Henry in the first half. It was by far the lowest-scoring half of the season for Beard’s team and it put them in a hole to begin the second half.
Also in the first half, the Red Raiders turned the ball over 11 times, had only one assist, and shot no free throws. That’s not how you are supposed to play out of the gates at home when you are trying to knock off the No. 2 team in the nation.
Tech can’t afford to continue putting itself in these early holes against good teams. Fighting back requires so much more energy than playing from ahead or doing battle in a game that is even. That’s why you so often see teams make a furious comeback only to sputter at the end of the game.
To their credit, the Red Raiders were able to open the second half on a run to get right back into the game and even take the lead. But they couldn’t hang on this time as they did against Texas on Wednesday after playing an awful first half in that game. Falling behind good teams early has been this team’s modus operandi this year and that’s not a recipe for success as we saw once again on Saturday.