Unable to overcome a slow start, the West Virginia University women’s basketball team dropped its Big 12 opener to TCU by a score of 62-48 on Wednesday at Schollmaier Arena in Fort Worth, Texas.
Senior forward Naomi Davenport led the team with 22 points, just missing a double-double with nine rebounds on the night. Redshirt junior guard Tynice Martin had 10 points and five rebounds, while senior guard Katrina Pardee had seven points, six rebounds and five assists.
West Virginia, (9-3, 0-1) shot just over 32 percent in the game, but was able to come away with a 36-35 advantage on the glass. The team shot 33.3 percent from downtown and had 16 turnovers.
TCU struck first off the opening tip, but Davenport countered with a triple on the other end. The Horned Frogs then scored eight straight for a 10-3 advantage midway through the first. Davenport added a jumper and a layup, before adding two more in the paint. A jumper by Pardee cut the WVU deficit to five at 14-11, but the Horned Frogs pushed it back up to five with a layup.
A triple by Pardee cut the TCU lead to two, as WVU trailed 16-14 with just under two to play in the first. However, TCU hit a shot from downtown as the Mountaineers capped the first quarter down 19-14.
After making up ground at the end of the first, West Virginia struggled in the second, shooting just over 22 percent. The Horned Frogs went on a 13-0 run, putting the Mountaineers in a 32-14 hole. Junior guard Lucky Rudd hit the free-throw line for a pair to cut the WVU drought, then added a 3-pointer to make it 36-19 with 1:18 to play in the half. Davenport added another trey as the Mountaineers trailed 36-22 at the half.
The Horned Frogs added to their lead with a layup to start the third, but the Mountaineers used six straight points from Martin to cut into the TCU advantage, trailing by 10 at 38-28 just over two minutes into play.
Rudd picked up the steal and the fast-break layup to cut the WVU deficit to eight, but the Horned Frogs added a pair in the paint to bring their lead back to 10 at 40-30. Jumpers from Pardee and Davenport kept it a 10-point deficit for the Mountaineers before a TCU jumper put it back to 12 at 46-35 with 2:46 to play. Davenport hit a free throw, then a layup, before Martin scored on the fast break as the Mountaineers scored five in a row to trail by eight, 48-40, after three quarters of action.
A 7-0 run by the Horned Frogs kicked off the final frame, putting West Virginia in a 15-point hole, trailing 55-40 with 7:46 to play. Davenport scored a fast-break layup, then added a point at the free-throw line to bring the deficit down to 12. TCU responded with a layup and a triple, pushing its lead to 15 once again. Davenport again scored in the paint before Martin hit the free-throw line for a pair with just under 90 seconds to play. TCU hit the line as well, as the Mountaineers dropped the contest, 62-48.
TCU (11-1, 1-0) shot 42.9 percent from the field with seven 3-pointers. The Horned Frogs were led by 17 points from Amy Okonkwo.
West Virginia returns home to host No. 13 Texas on Sunday in a 4 p.m. tip. The game is set to air on ESPN2 from the WVU Coliseum.