Texas Tech’s first choice of offense wasn’t clicking Friday against Grambling State, so the Red Raiders shifted gears to pull away for a lopsided victory.
Now they will test the waters against another SWAC opponent as they continue working toward the meatier part of their nonconference schedule.
After two fairly easy victories to begin the new season, Texas Tech finishes its opening homestand Monday when Prairie View A&M visits Lubbock.
The Panthers (0-4) will play their third games in as many days after losing 72-59 at Oklahoma State on Sunday. Prairie View dropped a game to Michigan on Saturday in Washington D.C. after starting the year with back-to-back setbacks in the Bay Area to St. Mary’s and San Francisco.
Meanwhile, the Red Raiders (2-0) have shown flashes of promise on offense in their two games, but the 3-point arc was a struggle against Grambling, which deployed a mix of zone defenses. Texas Tech finished the night 10 of 30 from deep but was just 4 of 18 in the opening 20 minutes.
“I told them to quit shooting threes. Let’s be patient, let’s move the ball,” first-year Texas Tech coach Mark Adams said. “Typically, the 2-3 zone is not a great defense, but you have to be patient against it and you don’t want to turn the ball over. We still struggle with that, with our patience.”
However, the Red Raiders did not struggle on defense. As clunky as their offense was, Texas Tech made every possession difficult for Grambling, which turned the ball over 24 times and corralled only four offensive rebounds.
Once the Red Raiders found a new method of scoring — thanks largely to Kevin McCullar (24 points, nine rebounds) and Davion Warren (19 points), they built a comfortable lead and gradually stretched it out. Texas Tech knocked down 18 of 31 shots after halftime (58.1%), including 6 of 12 from 3-point territory.
“If we could just get the ball side-to-side and attack the middle, things seem to work well for us,” Adams said. “We made a pretty good adjustments.
“I thought we made some steps forward from our last game. That’s what you want to try to prove every game out. I thought our defense was a little bit better. We forced some turnovers and were able to score off our defense late in the second half.”
–Field Level Media