AUSTIN (KXAN) — The final stretch of the season will be a doozy for No. 14 Texas, and it all starts with a game on the road against No. 18 Texas Tech.
It will be the final regular season meeting between the Longhorns and the Red Raiders. Texas Tech took the first meeting in Austin, thanks to a go ahead shot in the final seconds from the Red Raiders standout transfer guard Mac McClung.
Since that game, it’s been an up and down stretch for both teams. Texas has fared better, going .500 since the first meeting. However, the Red Raiders have had a rougher go of it, losing five of their last eight in that time.
Texas is riding high from their overtime win over No. 17 Kansas Tuesday night. Now, they’ll have to face another top tier Big 12 team, this time in the hostile environment of United Supermarkets Arena.
“We’re going to be going against an away crowd so we have to have a lot of energy,” forward Kai Jones said. “Guys like me and Brock have to come in and play with that juice.”
Sophomore forward Brock Cunningham and Jones have received plenty of praise from their coaches and teammates for their efforts on Tuesday.
Kai Jones scored ten points and pulled down eight rebounds against the Jayhawks. Cunningham’s impact isn’t exactly reflected on the box score, but his hustle plays and defense were critical in the Longhorns victory and hopes to bring more tomorrow and beyond.
“I think my role stays the exact same because we’ve found the winning recipe,” Cunningham said. “There’s no reason to switch it up even though we’re on the road, which is going to be a great opportunity for us to show that winning recipe again.”
Last trip to Lubbock was a good one for the Longhorns, winning a 68-58 contest almost exactly a year ago to date.
“It’s going to be big because of the way they beat us, and I think the biggest thing for us is to go in there and just guarding, playing our brand of defense and staying true to our principles,” Jones added.
Once the Longhorns get done with Tech, they’ll play a brutal schedule to make up for several postponements.
Tuesday, they’ll face Iowa State, then Thursday brings Oklahoma, and they’ll wrap up the season with TCU on Saturday. To make things even more difficult, all of those games will be on the road.
Tipoff for tomorrow’s game against Texas Tech at United Supermarkets Arena will be at 11am.