Dale Sparks/WVUSports.com

Teana Muldrow scored 16 points — one of four WVU players in double figures — but the No. 15 Mountaineers squandered an 18-point second-half lead in a 76-74 loss to TCU.

 

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — No. 15 West Virginia squandered an 18-point third-quarter lead. Then it let TCU go the length of the court for the tying layup in the final five seconds of regulation.

The crowning blow came with 4 seconds left in overtime when the Frogs’ Amy Okonkwo hit the go-ahead 3-pointer off an inbounds pass to complete a 76-74 upset on Saturday night.

“I’m just really proud of our team’s perseverance and grit. Not just in being down 18, but also being fatigued and tired and finding that extra juice,” said TCU coach Raegan Pebley. “They dug in and they didn’t give up. They continued to fight for each other, and sometimes that turns into a win.”

Chania Ray and Naomi Davenport led the Mountaineers (15-3, 3-3 Big 12) with 17 points and four steals each.

Kristina King grabbed 10 rebounds and scored 12 points for the Mountaineers, who led 49-31 in the third quarter before taking a 58-47 cushion into the fourth period.

West Virginia also got 16 points and eight rebounds from Teana Muldrow but committed 24 turnovers to TCU’s 22.

“We had the game won two different times,” WVU coach Mike Carey said. “We had it won in regulation, made a defensive mistake and we had it won in overtime. Then we don’t step out and guard a girl that we told them could shoot the 3.”

Ray’s two free throws put West Virginia up 68-66 late in regulation before Okonkwo’s layup forced overtime.

With 1:19 left in overtime, Ray scored another clutch shot to give West Virginia its last lead at 74-73.

The score stayed that way until 6 seconds remained when Muldrow pulled down a defensive rebound only to be tied up by several TCU players. Off the held ball, TCU got another chance to inbound, leading to Okonkwo’s game-winner.

“I don’t blame Teana at all because they are grabbing for the ball, they have to either foul or get the ball,” Carey said. “They were hitting her. But you can’t swing your elbows but they are coming all over you because they will call a technical. Then they get in on your arms and get the ball.

“She was trying to call a timeout. That’s what she was trying to do and they called a jump ball. It’s a shame.”

Okonkwo finished with 16 points and 12 rebounds for TCU (12-5, 3-3), while Jordan Moore had 17 points and 11 rebounds.

Kristina King grabbed 10 rebounds and scored 12 points for the Mountaineers, who led 49-31 in the third quarter before taking a 58-47 cushion into the fourth period.

West Virginia also got 16 points and eight rebounds from Teana Muldrow but committed 24 turnovers to TCU’s 22.

“Sloppy game,” Carey said.

A layup by Ray at 4:39 put the Mountaineers ahead 64-54, but TCU countered with a 10-0 run capped by a free throw from Amber Ramirez with 50 seconds to play.

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