Jon. Is. Back. “So long as God doesn’t give up on me, I’ll be back on that floor.” Those are the words that came from Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua via the Jumbotron. Homecoming at last. Hallelujah.
In regards to the Red Raiders, no Fardaws Aimaq who would likely be a key piece for Texas Tech if he was available for action today. They seem to be taking on more of a small-ball lineup with F Kevin Obanor in at the 5.
Tip is off, Keyonte takes it, ball goes around, right into wide open Adam Flagler’s hands. Bang, 3-0 Bears right off the bat. Texas Tech came right back with a layup the very next possession. Keyonte George made one immediately following this and then it seemed as if the Bears had a cover on the basket, missing layups, mid-ranges, and three-pointers alike. Going into the first media timeout score is 6-9, Raiders on top, 13:54 left.
Baylor came back out of the timeout, missed a jumper. That's when it happened, Everyday Jon checked into the game. The roof just about came off the Ferrell Center. The Bears and the Red Raiders traded buckets and LJ Cryer gets sent to the line as we go into the second media timeout. Bears still down 3, 11:08 to go.
LJ came back and sunk both free throws, Bears down 1. Texas Tech put up a three to follow this and it rattled out and fell into Jon’s hands, giving him his first game stat in 357 days. The Red Raiders went on a small run immediately after, forcing Drew to burn a timeout. Langston Love got on the floor, and it didn’t take him very long to get on the board as well, knocking down a running jumper toward the basket. Key came up after this running hard at the basket, got fouled, AND the bucket. He will have the opportunity to tie the game after the Under 8’ media timeout.
And tie it up he did. 17-17 with just under eight minutes to play. Next possession, Flagler, Bucket! Bears up two. After a couple buckets on the other side, Adam Flagler tied it back up with one of his patented mid-ranges that he shoots so well. Flagler stayed hot with a three the very next possession assisted by Flo Thamba, who soon after took the ball to the rim himself, AND-1! Free throw made as well. Bears going into the final media timeout up 1.
Jon is back again! He checked in and immediately put a body on Batcho. Then, top of the key, gets the ball, FOR THREE!!!! Jon drained it just like we’d see one of our many guards do without hesitation. Baylor took this momentum, made a stop, the here comes high-flying Jalen Bridges. He dunked it in over two Texas Tech defenders, but went down hard. Texas Tech called timeout as Jalen was slow to get up. Luckily, it seems as if he's fine just shaken up, as he heads over to the bike to stay warm. Tech fought to keep it close as the half ended, but the Bears held the lead, 38-34 with one half to play.
Despite strong offensive efforts from Texas Tech and poor shooting on our own end, Baylor held the lead at half. The Bears played from behind virtually all half, but made a push at the end to put the Raiders back down. Keyonte George and Adam Flagler are already in double digits with 10 each. Jon has three points and two rebounds, and his presence has never been more felt. If the Bears shoot even a little bit better than they did in the first half, they should take this game at the Ferrell as their own.
De’Vion Harmon made the first shot that the Raiders took in the second half, but it was soon covered up by a Flo Thamba slam. Baylor is looking better from the floor right now, with back-to-back buckets from Bridges and Flagler putting them up by 8 points. Right before the first media timeout, Keyonte stole the ball from Tech on the break, missed the layup, but fought for the board and tied it up giving the Bears the ball.
15:31 to go, Bears up 6, Jon and Langston Love check back into the game. Baylor had some good ball movement, and what I believe was three rebounds on the same possession, but nothing came down. Tech brought the ball down, but immediately turned the ball over, leading to a Jalen Bridges put-back bucket. Jalen is really putting his mark on this game, with a goal-tended, and-1 dunk the very next time down the court. Bears up 14 now after a three from Key; Mark Adams calls a much needed timeout. 54-40, 12:58 left. Baylor and Texas Tech traded threes and went into the Under 12 timeout still up 14.
The Bears wasted no time coming out of the timeout, with Jalen Bridges putting it up and in almost immediately. Another bucket for Jon! This time it was a lay-in fast off the break. The Bears forced an offensive foul on the defensive end and the ball is headed back our way. AND ANOTHER THREE FOR JON. HE CAN DO IT ALL! If teams have to worry about him from deep as well this season, it might be over for the NCAA. The Bears can’t miss right now, riding Jon’s three, making two more in Jalen and Langston. All of a sudden the Bears are up 25. 70-45, eight to play. Bears go into the media timeout now up 24.
Baylor came out of the media timeout with a very close to monumental dunk from Caleb Lohner as he got fouled. The students almost got cupcakes as Deion Harmon missed a free throw and just rattled in his second. Caleb Lohner came back from his almost greatness with an assist to LJ Cryer and then a put-back of his own. Final media timeout on deck, Bears up 23.
Josh made one of two from the line and kept the scoring going for Baylor to finish this one out. He followed it up by getting a tie-ball and refusing to let go, with whistles blowing and fans screaming alike. Aaaand here we go, in come Zach Loveday and Jake Younkin check into the game as the Texas Tech fans file out of the arena. No matter the lineup, the Bears won’t let up, with yet another emphatic slam from Josh Ojianwuna. Even Loveday catching some action with a slam of his own. Dale Bonner dribbles the clock out, and the Bears win, 89-62. What a game. Thank you God for Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua.
The Bears played so well today. With three guys in double figures, the team was lead by Jalen Bridges who put up 18 points and grabbed 8 rebounds. They shot over 40% from three. It was close in the first half, but in the words of Mark Adams, “The dam broke.”
“He’s relentless, such a special young man.” “There’s not someone else like him in college basketball.” “He’s the anchor of our defense.” “He’s in the gym almost all day. He’s our best leader. It’s everything to have him out there with us.” These are just some of the words given in reference to our man, Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua. It was a great day today. We are so lucky to have him back.