NASSAU, Bahamas – Texas Tech freshman Terrence Shannon, Jr. led the Red Raiders with 20 points, Kyler Edwards added 16 points and TJ Holyfield had 11 rebounds in a 76-73 loss to Mega Bemax on Sunday at the Kendal G.L. Isaacs National Gymnasium.
"There are a lot of positives to take from this game," Texas Tech coach Chris Beard said. "To be in a one-possession game against a pro team with some our best players sitting (Chris Clarke, Davide Moretti, Jahmi'us Ramsey), I thought our guys fought. We were down eight or nine with three minutes left and there was no quit. That is a positive sign."
The Red Raiders completed their Bahamas tour with a 1-1 record against Mega Bemax, a professional team from Belgrade, Serbia. Tech earned a 94-92 win in the first matchup between the two teams on Thursday. On Sunday, the game was tied at 73 with 1:18 remaining in the game on a Shannon dunk but Mega Bemax responded on its side of the court with a jumper to regain the lead. The Red Raiders would miss a 3-point attempt before a foul and free throw made it a three-point game. Kevin McCullar, who finished with eight points, missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer to end the three-game tour.
Shannon finished the game shooting 4-for-8 from the field and 9-for-10 from the free-throw line, while Edwards hit five shots beginning with a 3-pointer to begin the game and give the Red Raiders a 3-0 lead. Edwards made two of Tech's four 3-pointers in the game while Shannon and Andrei Savrasov had one each. The Red Raiders finished the game shooting 4-for-21 on 3-pointers, but were at 49.1 percent from the field headlined by 48 points in the paint that came on 24-for-45 shooting.
Holyfield added eight points to go along with his team-leading 11 rebounds, while Russel Tchewa had eight points and four rebounds in 15 minutes of play. Savrasov finished with five points and Avery Benson and Clarence Nadolny each added four. McCullar and Nadolny led the Red Raiders with three assists.
Shannon led the Red Raiders with 10 points at halftime after going 5-for-6 at the free-throw line and hitting one three-pointer. Tech trailed 40-37 at halftime. Edwards added five points with one 3-pointer, while Nadolny, Holyfield, Benson, McCullar and Tchewa each had four points. Edwards led the team with four rebounds, while Holyfield and Shannon had two assists each. Tech led 32-30 on a Savrasov layup after being sparked by a Holyfield steal and Shannon dunk that had the Red Raiders leading 28-23 with 5:30 to play in the first half. The five-point lead was the largest advantage of the half for Tech which limited Mega Bemax to 36 percent shooting from the field.
Texas Tech, which will open its regular season against Eastern Illinois on Nov. 5 at the United Supermarkets Arena, will return to Lubbock from the Bahamas on Monday after spending a week together. The team played three games, held a community clinic with Bahamian youth, practiced, swam with dolphins, snorkeled and spent quality time together each day.
"I'm pleased with this trip," Beard said. "We are relatively healthy coming back. We learned a lot about our team, had a great time and the guys became closer as a unit. I'm appreciative of the Serbia team playing us. They were great competition just like the Bahamas team. I think we are a work in progress, but I like our depth. I think that is going to be a strength. Our athleticism and length will help us be a strong defensive team again, but we'll need to work on our shooting. Above all, we leave here with a positive feeling about what we did here this week. Some of our weaknesses were exposed and strengths were shown. I'm proud of the guys for the way they played."