LUBBOCK - Deshawn Corprew recorded a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds and Jarrett Culver went for 19 points to help lead No. 11/13-ranked Texas Tech to a 71-46 win over The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley on Friday at the United Supermarkets Arena.
The Red Raiders (11-1) extended a 46-game non-conference home winning streak with the 25-point victory where they limited an opponent under 50 and 32 percent shooting for the sixth time this season. TTU finished off the 2018 calendar year with a 26-10 record and will open Big 12 play next week when it travels to play West Virginia (7-4) at 6 p.m. (CST) on Wednesday at the WVU Coliseum in Morgantown, West Virginia.
"This was a good game to prepare us for West Virginia," Texas Tech coach Chris Beard said. "In our non-conference we try to play people that prepare us. When this game came up, we knew how big of an opportunity it would be for us. We always want to play against well coached teams because it exposes and tests you. This game was a good game for us and I was pleased to win."
Texas Tech finished the game shooting 53.8 percent from the field with four 3-pointers, while UTRGV was held to 32.7 percent for the game after the Red Raider defense locked down and held them to 4-for-23 shooting (17.4 percent) and 15 points in the second half. TTU improved to 8-0 at home with the win while the Vaqueros fell to 8-7 overall on the season with the loss.
Corprew established a new career-high with his 10 rebounds and matched his scoring high after going 6-for-8 from the field. A sophomore who transferred in this season from South Plains College, Corprew made his first career start and would also add three steals for the Red Raiders. Averaging 7.4 points and 4.9 rebounds per game, Corprew had two games with eight rebounds prior to Friday's win over the Vaqueros and now has five double-digit scoring performances this season with 13 also coming against Northern Colorado.
"I feel very comfortable on the court now," Corprew said. "Every day I tell myself to just go out there and work hard and play hard and do my role. I think I'm still doing the same thing that I'm supposed to do when I go out there every night and just play aggressive and basically just play my role."
Culver would score in double-figures for the 12th straight game to start the season after shooting 8-for-13 from the field, while Matt Mooney led the team with six assists and would also add eight points, four rebounds and two steals. Tariq Owens scored eight of his 10 points in the second half and Brandone Francis led the reserves with eight points in the game that all came in the second half. Francis was 4-for-5 from the field in the second half and also contributed three rebounds. Kyler Edwards would score seven and Malik Ondigo added four rebounds for the Red Raiders who have now won six games by 25 points or more this season.
Corprew's double-double was the second of the season for a Red Raider after Owens had the first with 13 points and 11 rebounds in the win over Memphis on Dec. 1 in Miami.
Terry Winn III led UTRGV with 17 points after going 7-for-14 from the field in the game, while Lesley Varner II and Greg Bowie II scored eight each. The Vaqueros would commit 19 turnovers in the game and were outrebounded by a 34-22 margin.
Texas Tech led 38-31 at halftime after shooting 14-for-28 from the field in the opening 20 minutes led by Culver who had 11 points on a 5-for-9 shooting performance. The Red Raiders, who hit four 3-pointers in the half, led by as many as 11 in the opening half but did trail for 3:18 in it. The team owned the lead at halftime for the 10th time in 12 games this season and had a 17-9 rebounding margin advantage. Mooney added eight points and two assists for the Red Raiders, while Corprew led the team with four rebounds and had seven points. The Vaqueros stayed with TTU by shooting 46.2 percent and forcing eight turnovers in the opening half before the Red Raiders pulled away in the second half.
Texas Tech will return from its game against WVU next Wednesday to host Kansas State on Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019 at 1 p.m. and Oklahoma on Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2019 at the United Supermarkets Arena. The Red Raiders, who are currently 11-1 in non-conference play, will host Arkansas on Saturday, Jan. 26, 2019 in their final non-conference game of the regular season after playing seven Big 12 games.