College Basketball Report: Week 7

The Baylor Bears extend their winning streak to eight while the Texas Longhorns drop an unexpected game to Providence

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TEXAS LONGHORNS (9-2)

Last week (0-1): L - Providence 70-48

This week: Monday vs High Point Panthers

The Texas Longhorns' five game-winning came to an unexpected end in a 70-48 defeat to the Providence Friars on Saturday. The Longhorns failed to score 50 points in the loss, as Providence held Texas to 31.7% shooting from the field, and an unpleasant 14.3 % from behind the arc โ€” UT's lowest shooting percentages of the season.

Sophomore guard Courtney Ramey led the way for the Longhorns with 12 points, as Jase Febres added six points in 33 minutes. Following the loss, the Longhorns will return to action on Monday for a home showdown against the High Point Panthers.

TEXAS A&M AGGIES (5-5)

Last week (1-0): W - Oregon State 64-49

This week: Monday vs. Texas Southern

The Texas A&M Aggies won their second consecutive game in a 64-49 victory over the Oregon State Beavers on Saturday. It was Deja VA for the Aggies as it was their second come from behind win after trailing at the half by 11. A&M outscored Oregon State 42-19 in the final 20 minutes while shooting 13-for-27 (48.1%) from the field.

Senior forward Josh Nebo led the Aggies in scoring with 15 points and seven rebounds in the win. With one game on the schedule, the Aggies will look to make it three straight wins on Monday when they take on the Texas Southern Tigers.

Houston Cougars (9-3)

Last week (3-0): W - UTEP 77-57, W - Portland 81-56, W - George Tech 70-59

This week: Wednesday vs. Washington

Following a loss against the OSU Cowboys, the Houston Cougars are currently riding a three-game win streak after a perfect 3-0 week. The Cougars picked up a 20 point victory over the UTEP Miners, a game in which Houston recorded a season-high 11 blocks โ€” with big man Brison Gresham leading the way with a career-best six rejections.

Following the win, the Cougars hit the road to participate in the Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic, where UH opened the tournament with back-to-back wins against Portland (81-56) and George Tech (70-59).

After going scoreless in the win against the Miners, Quentin Grimes has been on fire in Hawaii averaging 22.0 points on 64% shooting from the field. The Cougars will face off against the Washington Huskies for the tournament championship in a Christmas Day showdown.

RICE OWLS (8-4)

Last week (1-0): W - St. Thomas 103-70

This week: Sunday vs. Sam Houston

The Rice Owls took a wire-to-wire 33-point victory over the St. Thomas Celts on Thursday inside the Tudor Fieldhouse in Houston. The Celts allowed 12 of the Owls 15 man roster to score, with Trey Murphy III leading the way with 21 points (8-14 FG, 5-10 3PT), 10 rebounds and a block.

Following the win, the Owls will return to Tudor Fieldhouse for a Sunday showdown against Sam Houston State.

BAYLOR BEARS (9-1)

Last week (1-0): W - Tennessee-Martin 91-63

This week: Monday vs. Jackson State

Following a one-point victory against the Butler Bulldogs, the Baylor Bears won a convincing 91-63 victory over the Tennessee-Martin Skyhawks Wednesday night. While leading the Bears to a win, Jared Butler and Davion Mitchell each scored 19 points apiece, while sophomore guard Flo Thamba added 11 off the bench.

Win the win, Baylor has extended their winning streak to eight ahead of their home match against the Jackson State Jaguars on Monday.

TCU HORNED FROGS (8-3)

Last week (0-1): L - Xavier 67-59

This week: Monday vs George Mason

This game was the first meeting between TCU and Xavier since December of 1980, and it took the Musketeers nearly 40 years to seek their revenge.

After winning two games in a row, the Horned Frogs suffered a 67-59 loss to Xavier on Sunday. An enormous portion of TCU's defeat came due to the lack of production off their bench, as the Musketeers' second until outscored TCU 20-5 in bench points.

In addition to the lack of bench production, TCU gave up nine offensive rebounds that converted into 17 second-half points for Xavier. Following the loss, the Horned Frogs will return to action on Monday to face off against the George Mason Patriots.

TEXAS TECH RED RAIDERS (8-3)

Last week: (1-0) W - UTRGV 68-58

This week: Sunday vs. CSU Bakersfield

After a slow start to the game, the Texas Tech Red Raiders capitalized on a 42-point second-half performance to take a 68-58 victory over Texasโ€“Rio Grande Valley Vaqueros on Saturday. With the win, the Red Raiders moved up one spot to No. 23 in the Associated Press Top 25 College Basketball rankings.

Freshman guard Jahmi'us Ramsey led the Red Raiders in scoring with 15 points (6-12 FG, 2-7 3PT), while his backcourt mate Terrence Shannon, Jr added in 14 points (5-9 FG, 4-4 FT) in the win. Following their third straight win in a row, Texas Tech will return to the court on Sunday for a showdown against the CSU Bakersfield.

SMU MUSTANGS (9-2)

Last week (1-1): L - Georgia 87-85, W - Georgia State 85-76

This week: No game schedule

The SMU Mustangs dropped their second consecutive game in an 87-85 double-overtime loss to the Georgia Bulldogs. SMU put up a good fight but was not enough to overcome Georgia's Sahvir Wheeler layup in the final two seconds of the game.

After the loss, the Mustangs bounced back with an 85-76 victory over Georgia State. Feron Hunt and Kendric Davis scored 18 points apiece, as SMU shot 52% from the floor.
With no games on the schedule, the Mustangs will return to the court on Wednesday, Jan. 1st in a conference showdown against USF.

LSU TIGERS (7-4)

Last week (0-2): L - East Tennessee 74-63, L- USC 70-68

This week: Sunday vs Liberty

After heading into their break on a four-game win streak, the LSU Tigers' winning ways came to a halt with a 74-63 loss to the East Tennessee State Buccaneers Wednesday night. In the loss, the Buccaneers won the battle of the board as they outrebounded the Tigers 40-29 and recorded 15 second-chance points.

Following the loss against East Tennessee State, The Tigers suffered a heartbreak 70-68 defeat to the USC Trojans on Saturday. Senior guard, Skylar Mays nearly carried LSU to a victory with a game-high 21 points (6-14 FG, 8-10 FT), to go along with six rebounds, three steals and a block in the loss.

In the midst of a two-game skid, the Tigers will return to the court on Sunday for a match against the Liberty Flames.

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McCullers Jr. had nine strikeouts over four

McCullers Jr. looks sharp in tune-up before Rangers overpower Houston's bullpen

Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

Despite watching their chance to clinch their playoff spot on the field slip away in the walk-off loss on Friday, the Astros benefited from a loss by the Angels later in the night, securing their playoff berth. That meant they could play conservatively in the final two games of the season against the Rangers in Arlington. Here's a quick rundown of Saturday's matchup:

Final Score: Rangers 6, Astros 1.

Record: 29-30, second in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Jimmy Herget (1-0, 3.20 ERA).

Losing pitcher: Brandon Bielak (3-3, 6.75 ERA).

McCullers Jr. looks playoff-readyย 

With nothing substantial to play for, the Astros did not expect to ask Lance McCullers Jr. to go deep into Saturday's game, instead giving him a few innings for a tune-up before assuming whatever role he would play in the post-season. He looked impressive, a promising sign after his injury stint and struggles on the road at points this season.

He finished four innings, during which he racked up a season-high nine strikeouts while giving up no runs on just two hits, both singles, and two walks. His final line: 4.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 9 K, 0 HR, 61 P.

Both teams trade runs asย  they go to their bullpens

Meanwhile, neither team was getting much going at the plate in the early goings, keeping it a scoreless game through the first five. Brandon Bielak took over for McCullers Jr. starting in the fifth but would allow the first run of the night in the bottom of the sixth as the Rangers would get three singles to take a 1-0 lead.

After Kyle Gibson held the Astros at bay for six innings, Houston would get on the board against Texas' bullpen, getting a leadoff double by Aledmyz Diaz in the top of the seventh. Diaz moved to third on a sac bunt, then scored on a sac fly by Jack Mayfield, making it 1-1.

Rangers blow it open in the seventh

The tie didn't last long, as Bielak would put two on base in the bottom of the seventh before giving up a three-run homer to make it a 4-1 Rangers lead. Andre Scrubb was next out of Houston's bullpen and allowed a solo home run on his first pitch. Scrubb would complete the inning, but not before allowing another run on three singles to push Texas' lead to 6-1.

Cy Sneed was next out of Houston's bullpen for the bottom of the eighth and tossed a scoreless frame with two strikeouts. Houston would not make the unlikely comeback in the top of the ninth, with the Rangers taking the game 6-1.

Up Next: The last game of the Astros' 2020 regular season will be Sunday at 2:05 PM Central, as are most other games on the MLB slate on the league's final regular-season day. Houston's starter is TBD as they will continue to preserve their arms for the best-of-three first round that starts on Tuesday, while Texas will send Jordan Lyles (1-6, 7.08 ERA) to the mound.

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