LUBBOCK (AP) – Texas Tech clawed its way back to make its first two Big 12 games interesting.
Against No. 10 Kansas there was no second wind, no run to pull close, no spark off the bench and not much scoring in the second half — all of it adding up to another conference loss.
Thomas Robinson had 19 points and 12 rebounds to lead the Jayhawks to an 81-46 win on Wednesday night.
“We didn’t make any shots from beyond the 3, and we didn’t have any low-post presence,” Red Raiders coach Billy Gillispie said. “When you don’t guard better than you did — we missed so many assignments defensively. We didn’t help each other defensively enough and just got to go back to the drawing boards.”
Tyshawn Taylor scored 15 points for the Jayhawks (13-3), who improved to 3-0 in Big 12 play for the sixth consecutive season. Meanwhile, the Red Raiders (7-8, 0-3) have dropped their first three conference games for the third straight year.
Kansas’ man-to-man defense shut down the passing lanes and the Jayhawks hammered the ball inside in the second half. The overmatched Red Raiders couldn’t keep pace.
Robinson, the only Big 12 player averaging a double-double, got his team’s first points outside the lane in the second half. The Jayhawks made their first eight field goals after halftime inside and then Robinson sank a 3-pointer to put the Jayhawks up 56-26 with 12:32 remaining.
Javarez Willis scored 12 to lead the Red Raiders, whose previous season low was 49 points in a November loss to Indiana State.
Gillispie dropped to 1-3 against his former boss. Gillispie, who beat Kansas coach Bill Self only once when he coached at Texas A&M, was an assistant under Self from 1997-2000 at Tulsa and 2000-2002 at Illinois.
Red Raiders freshman Jordan Tolbert, ranked 10th nationally in field goal percentage (62.4 percent) and the team’s leading scorer, had just four points.
The Jayhawks fell behind early but found their form as the first half wore on. Kansas finished with 38 points in the paint to 18 for Texas Tech.
Tech led 16-15, but Kansas ended the half on a 20-4 run to lead 35-20 at the break.
Texas Tech’s Terran Petteway was ejected in the first half after he was called for a flagrant foul on Conner Teahan. Petteway elbowed Teahan and was escorted off the floor.
About 3 minutes earlier, Petteway got hit with a technical foul as Travis Releford tried to inbound the ball.
Texas Tech has the worst overall record in the Big 12 and hasn’t won a game over a ranked opponent in 17 tries since December 2009, when the Red Raiders beat then-No. 12 Washington 99-92 in overtime under Pat Knight.
Unlike their previous two Big 12 games, the Red Raiders could not mount a comeback. Last week, they cut a 13-point lead to two in the closing minutes of a 67-59 loss at Oklahoma State and pulled within four late in the second half against No. 4 Baylor, which won 73-60 on Saturday.
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