LUBBOCK, Texas – The No. 21 Texas Tech men’s basketball team looks to head into the Holiday break on a high note when the Red Raiders face Abilene Christian on Friday to the United Supermarkets Arena.
Tipoff is slated for 2 p.m. CT, and the game will be televised by FOX Sports Southwest Plus along with the FOX Sports Go app. Chuck Heinz, Craig Wells and Adam Doyle will serve as the announcing team.
The Texas Tech Sports Network will carry the game live on its flagship stations Double T 97.3 FM, 100.7 FM The Score and 950 AM in Lubbock. Geoff Haxton and Clark Lammert will have the radio call. The radio broadcast also will be available on the Texas Tech Sports Network radio affiliates, online at www.TexasTech.com and the Tune-In Radio app. Fans can interact live with Tuesday’s broadcast by following @GunsUpRadio on Twitter.
The Red Raiders (10-1) dialed up a 90-54 victory over Florida Atlantic on Tuesday and have won nine of their first 10 games by double figures. Texas Tech has posted nine of its 10 wins by 10-plus points.
Abilene Christian (8-4) has won five of its last six games highlighted by 109-60 victory over Arlington Baptist on Tuesday. The Wildcats have tallied two road victories over Campbell and Air Force.
“I have a lot of relationships,” Texas Tech head coach Chris Beard said. “I was an assistant coach at Abilene Christian for Shannon Hayes in the 90’s. Joe Golding was our point guard. Joe is now the head coach at ACU and also a personal friend of mine, one of my best friends. Ted Crass was one of our assistants on our championship team at Little Rock. He is now an assistant coach at ACU and somebody that I have a lot of respect for. Ted is one of the best guys I’ve ever worked with. Brette Tanner, the associate head coach, was my first assistant in the late 90’s when I was a junior college coach. ACU is a team that I always pull for, but obviously not in this game.”
Tickets to Friday’s game can be purchased for as low as $5 at the United Supermarkets Arena Box Office which opens on gameday starting at 12 p.m. CT.
Fans are reminded that the S1 Parking Lot at the John Walker Soccer Complex which is located at 3901 10th Street is the lone free parking lot for all fans which includes ADA parking for all men’s basketball games. A free shuttle service begins 75 minutes prior to tipoff and runs up to 60 minutes following the game to transport fans to and from the United Supermarkets Arena. Buses also are ADA accessible. There is no longer free parking available in the West Lot across from the United Supermarkets Arena.
Traffic patterns around the United Supermarkets Arena have changed for the 2017-18 season. All patrons with North Lot passes must enter their lot from the Main and Flint intersection. All fans with South Lot passes must enter their lot from the 18th and Flint intersection. All West Lot pass holders must enter their lot at the Texas Tech Parkway and Knoxville Avenue intersection. All vehicles will be blocked from Indiana Avenue off of the Texas Tech Parkway.
Fans are reminded to go clear at all Texas Tech basketball games. The clear bag policy provides a safer atmosphere and speeds up the entry process into the United Supermarkets Arena.
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The Red Raiders have outscored their opponents by 22.6 points per game margin which is tops in the nation. Texas Tech also is among the nation’s Top 10 in turnovers margin (+6.6 – 6th), field goal percentage defense (36.6 – 7th), scoring defense (59.7 PPG – 8th), turnovers forced (19.2 – 10th) and steals per game (10.0 – 10th).
Keenan Evans has managed 17.0 points per game which is tied for fifth on the Big 12 leaderboard and tucked away double figures in 10 of 11 games. He has climbed up to No. 27 on the program’s all-time scoring list with 1,125 career points. Evans also has provided 4.0 assists and 1.8 steals per game.
Jarrett Culver and Zhaire Smith continue to impress through the team’s opening 11 games with 10.4 and 10.0 points per game, respectively. The duo has reached double figures a combined 14 times. Smith has strung together a six-game run in double figures. He has notched 12.2 points per game on an efficient 27-of-39 shooting clip during the stretch.
Niem Stevenson has tallied 8.9 points, 2.7 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game. He has come away with 10-plus points in six of his last seven and seven of his last 10 appearances. Stevenson emerged with 12 points on a quartet of three-balls versus Florida Atlantic last time out.
Zach Smith has made an impact in all facets of the game with 6.7 points, 4.2 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 1.4 blocks and 1.1 steals per game. He is 36 points shy from becoming the 41st member of Texas Tech’s 1,000 points club. Smith also has crept within 14 blocks on Tony Battie’s program record.
Tommy Hamilton IV and Davide Moretti have secured 6.5 and 6.1 points per game followed by Justin Gray and Norense Odiase who have added 5.3 and 5.1 points per game. Moretti and Hamilton IV piled up season’s best with 14 and 13 points during the FAU game.
ABOUT ABILENE CHRISTIAN
The Wildcats have three players who have averaged in double figures headed by Jalone Friday’s 15.6 points and 5.3 rebounds per game.
Jalen Lewis has secured 13.9 points and 6.0 rebounds per game. He has knocked down 62.5 percent of his field goals. Tevin Foster has dialed up 11.8 points per game followed by Jaylen Franklin’s 9.1 points and 5.1 assists per game.
ACU’s top option off the bench is Hayden Farquhar with 5.2 points per game.
“They have really good players,” Beard said. “They have four guys from their roster that are all conference players in their league. A couple of those guys will play basketball after college, they’re pros. They have two freshmen of the year players now later in their careers on their roster. So their coaches - Brette, Joe, and Ted - they know what they are doing. Whenever you play against a team that has good players and a good coach, you know you are going to have to play well to have a chance to win.”
Texas Tech embarks on its 18-game Big 12 slate against No. 18 Baylor next Friday. Tipoff is slated for 7 p.m. CT from the United Supermarkets Arena.
Visit www.TexasTech.com for the latest news and information on the men's basketball program. Fans also can follow the program on its social media outlets by liking TexasTechMBB on Facebook along with following @TexasTechMBB on Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat.