|No. 6 West Virginia, No. 24 TCU meet in key Big 12 game|
West Virginia and TCU will square off Monday night at Schollmaier Arena in Fort Worth, Texas, after combining to lose three of five games they played last week while both were ranked in the Top 25.
The two teams return to the Big 12 gauntlet, where nearly every game comes down to a handful of possessions.
West Virginia, ranked sixth in last week's Associated Press poll, walloped Texas 86-51 on Saturday to snap a two-game losing streak. Jevon Carter led the Mountaineers with 22 points and Beetle Bolden hit 5 of 6 shots from 3-point range to tie a career high with 19 points.
"I thought we ran better offense in the second half," West Virginia coach Bob Huggins said. "The first half I don't know what we were. Everyone was a little out of character doing things they shouldn't do."
West Virginia outrebounded Texas 45-29 and owned a 14-6 advantage on the offensive glass that led to 21 second-chance points.
Sophomore forward Sagaba Konate had a career-high 14 rebounds, 10 points and six blocks, and Esa Ahmad added seven blocks in the win over Texas.
But it was Logan Routt in particular who stood out to Huggins. He totaled five blocks in 10 minutes and was helping find ways to keep the ball out of the Longhorns' hands.
"We work at it," Huggins said. "Logan was terrific. He not only got some rebounds for us, but he kept Texas from getting rebounds, which is really critical. (Konate) was really good, too."
The Horned Frogs head home after a 73-69 loss at Kansas State in which they fell behind by double digits early in the game and fought back to within five points in the waning moments.
TCU coach Jamie Dixon was ejected for the first time in his career with 5:23 remaining and the Frogs trailing by seven.
"I'll take full responsibility for the loss. It's on me," Dixon said after the game. "I gave (Kansas State) points, and in a close game that just killed the team. First time it's ever happened to me."
Vladmir Brodziansky led the Horned Frogs (14-5, 2-5 Big 12) with 15 points. Kenrich Williams had 11 points and 10 rebounds.
TCU, which was ranked 24th in the Associated Press poll last week before beating Iowa State and losing at Kansas State, will likely see its eight-week, record-setting streak of being ranked come to an end. The Horned Frogs have dropped five conference games, including two in overtime, by a combined 16 points.
TCU point guard Alex Robinson, who has moved into the starting lineup for the Horned Frogs after a knee injury to Jaylen Fisher, had 13 points, five rebounds and six assists. He said the team's near misses have brought the players closer together rather than pulled them apart.
"We just stay together," Robinson said. "We're focusing on our next game, putting this one behind us. Just keep it moving."
West Virginia leads the all-time series with TCU 11-0, and the Horned Frogs lost the last meeting between the two, 61-60 last February in Fort Worth. While coaching at Pitt, Dixon was 12-7 against West Virginia.