FORT WORTH, Texas. – Taiyanna Jackson and S’Mya Nichols combined for 42 points to lead the Kansas Jayhawks to an 81-74 victory over TCU on Saturday evening at Schollmaier Arena.
The victory is the second-straight for Kansas, who improves to 12-10 on the year and 5-6 in Big 12 play while picking up their first road win in conference play. TCU falls to 15-6 on the year and 2-8 in league play.
“It was a hard game to play in and a hard game to coach in because the whistle was so different from one half to the next,” Kansas coach Brandon Schneider said following the game. “I thought we showed really good resilience. There was only one moment in the game that I didn’t like our collective body language and that’s so important when you’re playing on the road.”
Kansas came out hot and scored the first five points of the game and carried that momentum to a 10-4 advantage on a Zakiyah Franklin layup just before the midway point of the first quarter. All five starters for KU scored in the frame, with Jackson and Franklin scoring four apiece as the Jayhawks held a 16-14 edge after 10 minutes of play.
Shooting heated up early in the second quarter, with the first five made field goals coming from beyond the arc. TCU hit the first two, taking their first lead and extending it to 20-16 before Holly Kersgieter and Franklin hit threes on consecutive possessions to put the Jayhawks back on top, 22-20.
TCU started the second quarter 4-for-4 from beyond the arc and again led by four, 28-24 with 6:36 to play in the quarter, but Nichols scored the next four points for KU and evened the scoring with 5:05 left until halftime. The Jayhawks trailed 31-28 before scoring nine-straight points to again match their largest lead of the half at 37-31. TCU hit a three-pointer in the final minute to make it 37-34 at the break.
Jackson dominated the opening minutes of the third quarter, using three offensive rebounds to score KU’s first eight points of the second half. Kersgieter followed that with a traditional three-point play, putting the Jayhawks on top 48-43 with 6:42 remaining in the third.
TCU went on an 8-0 run over the next 2:35, regaining the lead at 51-48 with 3:21 to play. Jackson ended the run by knocking down a pair of free throws and Nichols hit a pair of baskets to knot the score at 54-all with 2:13 to play in the third. The Horned Frogs, however, finished with a 7-3 run to end the quarter and led 61-57 after outscoring KU 27-20 in the third.
Kersgieter opened the fourth quarter with a three-pointer and added another with 5:57 to play to break a 65-all tie and put the Jayhawks back on top. TCU regained a brief 69-68 lead before Nichols scored the first five points of KU’s 7-0 run which gave the Jayhawks the lead for the rest of the game. Kansas finished on a 13-5 run to secure the victory.
Jackson finished with 20 points, nine rebounds and three blocked shots for the Jayhawks, falling one rebound shy of her 10th double-double of the season. During the game, Jackson surpassed Jennifer Jackson (1997-2001) and Natalie Knight (2011-15) on the all-time scoring list and passed Aishah Sutherland (2009-12) for third in career rebounds at Kansas.
Nichols had 22 points on the night for the fourth 20-point game of her freshman season, while adding five rebounds, three assists and a career-high-tying four steals. Kersgieter finished with 16 points and eight rebounds, while Franklin added 10 points and six assists. Wyvette Mayberry totaled seven points, five rebounds and three assists as KU got 75-of-81 points from its five starters.
Kansas welcomes another new Big 12 Conference opponent to Allen Fieldhouse on Thursday, Feb. 8, as Houston comes to Lawrence for the first time. Tipoff is set for 6:30 p.m. CT and the game will be broadcast on Big 12 NOW on ESPN+.