FORT WORTH, Texas (AP)Mike Miles Jr. scored 26 points to lead No. 14 TCU past Lamar 77-64 on Friday night.
Miles’ big night came despite taking an elbow from a teammate that drew blood in the first half, forcing him to leave the game for a few minutes. He finished two points shy of his career high of 28.
Miles was 7 of 13 from the floor, including 3 of 7 from 3-point range. He had five rebounds and five assists.
It was physically a tough night for Miles, who injured his right big toe last week before Monday’s season opener. Aside from the elbow to the face, he hit the floor multiple times on drives to the basket. He also had to walk off a cramp before shooting free throws late in the game.
TCU, which escaped with a one-point win Monday against Arkansas-Pine Bluff, also struggled to put away Lamar (1-1). Each time the Horned Frogs (2-0) seemed poised to blow the game open, the Cardinals scrapped back within striking distance.
”I felt like we came out with a little better intensity,” Miles said. ”Not that much, but better than last game.”
Jakevion Buckley led Lamar with 22 points on 7-of-13 shooting.
Chuck O’Bannon Jr. scored five consecutive points on a baseline dunk and a corner 3 to put the Horned Frogs up by eight with 10:19 remaining, but the Cardinals wouldn’t go away. It wasn’t until the final six minutes that TCU held Lamar comfortably at bay.
Lamar cut the deficit to one with 13 minutes remaining, but Jakobe Coles buried a 3-pointer from the corner to give TCU a 51-47 lead.
Chris Pryor had 11 points on 4-of-16 shooting for the Horned Frogs. Terry Anderson and Adam Hamilton each scored 10.
The Frogs struggled again from 3-point range (8 of 32), and Miles was the only TCU player to shoot a free throw. He was 9 of 14 from the line. Six Lamar players shot free throws.
”We’ve become pretty reliant on 3-point shooting right now and not shooting it well,” coach Jamie Dixon said. ”We’re not clicking offensively, no question about it.”
The Frogs have started the season 12 of 53 on 3-pointers.
”In no way do I feel we played a great game but at least we addressed some things,” Dixon said. ”We’re not penetrating enough. We’re relying on (Miles) for our only source of penetration. We’ve got to get more.”
Lamar hosts Huston-Tillotson on Monday night.
TCU hosts Northwestern State on Monday night.
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