FORT WORTH, Texas — TCU rallied from a 33-30 halftime deficit with a 16-0 run out of the break, ending the 2018-19 Creighton men’s basketball season by a 71-58 score.
TCU advances to the semifinals of the National Invitation Tournament at Madison Square Garden for the second time in three seasons, improving to 23-13. Creighton ends its season with a 20-15 mark.
Creighton led for nearly all of the first half, with four players contributing either six or seven points in the opening 20 minutes. Martin Krampelj had seven points and five rebounds at the break to lead the Bluejays, while Kaleb Joseph had four assists. CU had 12 assists on 12 field goals and won the rebound battle 19-13 in the first 20 minutes. TCU was paced by Kouat Noi in the opening half, as the sophomore had 13 points. TCU’s leading scorer, Desmond Bane, had two points on 1-of-4 shooting at the intermission.
TCU opened the second half with an 16-0 run to take its first double-figure lead at 46-33 before Mitch Ballock silenced the crowd with a three-pointer at the 15:56 mark. Creighton trimmed the deficit to 49-41 and had a possession with three attempts from long-range without converting before TCU’s Kouat Noi drained his sixth triple of the night. CU made just 3-of-20 shots to start the second half while the hosts drained 9-of-12 shots to open up a lead as large as 59-43 with 9:24 left
Ballock went on a personal 8-4 run to trim the gap to 12 at 63-51, but the Jays got no closer after TCU responded with the next four points.
Noi topped TCU with 25 points, and Alex Robinson added 12 points and 11 rebounds. Also in double-figures with 15 points was JD Miller.