Well. 6 TCU was on the ropes Friday.
But the Horned Frogs staged a late rally to secure a 72-70 victory over 11-seed Arizona State and cap off a frantic final few minutes with a game-winning layup in the dying seconds.
TCU extended its two-point lead to 70-67 on a free throw by All-Big 12 guard Mike Miles Jr. with 24 seconds left. But the failure on the front end of the double bonus left the door open for the Sun Devils. Arizona State’s DJ Horne answered at the other end with a 3-pointer to tie the game at 70 with 15.6 seconds left.
But TCU’s JaKobe Coles had the final say. After a TCU timeout, the sophomore forward sank a floater in traffic with 1.5 seconds left to give TCU a 72-70 lead.
Arizona State’s desperate surge over time fizzled out, and the Horned Frogs advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. The Sun Devils watched their NCAA Tournament run end in heartbreak after dominating most of the second half.
TCU took control early and opened up a 13-2 lead early in the first half. But Arizona State responded with a 15-4 run to tie the game at 17 and go into halftime with a 44-37 lead. The Sun Devils held the Horned Frogs at bay for most of the second half and led 62-54 with 5:26 left. That’s when TCU started its rally.
The Horned Frogs chipped away at ASU’s lead over the next few minutes, then tied the game at 67 with 1:52 left. Two free throws by Damion Baugh with 34 seconds left gave TCU its first lead of the second half. Then came the frantic finish.
Miles led TCU with 26 points, four rebounds and three assists. He did most of his damage on the free throw line, where he converted 12 of 14 attempts. His late miss gave ASU a chance, but Coles made sure it wouldn’t cost the Horned Frogs.
Horne was valiant in a 17-point effort for ASU that included four of five nights from beyond the three-point arc. It just wasn’t enough to fend off a better TCU team.
The Horned Frogs advance to the second round in the West Region, where they will face No. 3 Gonzaga on Sunday at 9:40 PM ET.