The Longhorns overcame a five-point halftime deficit to defeat upset-minded Texas Tech 87-81 in Austin.
Point guard Dogus Balbay finally got the Texas offense in gear in the second half after a sluggish first half for the Longhorns, who moved to 8-5 in the Big 12 and took a game lead on Kansas State (7-6) in the race for the fourth and final seed in the conference tournament. Missouri mopped the floor with Kansas State tonight, winning 94-74.
Balbay put the Longhorns ahead with a layup with 14:38 to play and they never trailed again. His ability to get to the rim helped change the game.
He also got Damion James involved, and James finished with 20 points and 11 rebounds after a poor first half. A.J. Abrams led the Longhorns with 24 points.
Alan Voskuil's 3-pointer with 39 seconds left pulled Tech within 85-81, but the Red Raiders were called for a questionable foul on Abrams on the ensuing possession. Abrams hit one free throw and the Red Raiders didn't score again.
Dexter Pittman scored six of the Longhorns' first eight points of the game but had only one free throw after that in limited minutes. He had a back problem in the second half.
MARQUETTE: Guard Dominic James will have season-ending surgery after suffering a broken bone in his left foot early in the first half of a 93-82 victory over Connecticut.
UT-ARLINGTON: The Mavericks had their worst shooting night of the season, hitting 33 percent in both the first and second half, in losing at Lamar 75-64 and seeing a five-game winning streak end. "Our defense wasn't any good either," UTA coach Scott Cross said. That pretty much covers it.