NEW YORK — Texas Tech men’s basketball team beat undefeated #1 Louisville 70-57 at the Jimmy V Classic at the “World Famous Arena”.
Red Raiders’ guard Davide Moretti was the top scorer with 18 points with 3 assists. Terrence Shannon chipped in with 13 points helped distributed the ball on the wings.
Texas Tech manned up despite missing leading scorer Jahmi’us Ramsey, who averages 17.3 points per game. He sat out of the game due to a hamstring injury.
“It’s like I told my guys, I said, ’Our objective is not to be better than Louisville. Our objective is to beat them in a 40-minute game,” Texas Tech coach Chris Beard said. “And there’s a big difference. It’s a 40-minute game and you’ve got to find a way to win it. And tonight we did just that.”
Louisville shot a dismal 34 percent from the field (18-53) and 17.6 percent (3-17) from beyond the arc. Forward Jordan Nwora led the way for the Cardinals with 14 points, 9 boards, and 2 steals.
About 10 minutes later Benson crashed the glass to tipped the ball in to provide the Raiders with a 14-12 advantage with 8:10 left before halftime.
“Avery Benson in a lot of ways is the backbone of our culture,” Beard said. “This is his third year at Tech and he has an Elite Eight ring, a Final Four ring and a Big 12 Championship ring. And that’s not by happenstance. He’s been a big part of it.”
The Cardinals went nearly 10 minutes without a basket from the field until Steven Enoch snapped the scoreless streak with a turnaround shot from the left block to put Louisville down 25-18 at the 4:35 mark.
Enoch, who had 10 points at the break, also snapped an 11-0 Raiders run.
The Cardinals would chip away with a 5-0 run closing to within one point –by a three-pointer and jumper made by Ryan McMahon and Steven Enoch to put things at 29-28 with a little over one minute to play to the break.
“Early in the game, we took way too many ill-advised shots and made some poor decisions,” Louisville head coach Chris Mack said of his team’s play. “Because of that, I don’t think we ever felt comfortable enough on the offensive end.”
Texas Tech pushed the tempo in the second half due to an early 10-1 second-half run capped by two long three-pointers by Moretti. That put the Raiders up 47-36 with 11:41 left in the contest.
The Red Raiders also increased the ball pressure on the perimeter which disrupted the offensive flow of the Cardinals. Louisville didn’t have an answer for the 94-foot court to court ramped up pressure.
“I give all the credit in the world to Texas Tech. I thought they took the fight to us tonight,“ Mack said. ”I think they have obviously, lost a lot from last year. But they haven’t lost their identity. … Chris (Beard) did a much better job preparing his kids for the environment and the type of game it was tonight. And I didn’t.“