Turner finished 11-of-12 from the floor, including going 3-of-3 on three-pointers, to set a career-high with 25 points. He also grabbed 10 rebounds to collect his first collegiate double-double.
Turner hit his first four shots, including two mid-range jumpers, to set his record-setting night in motion.
“To be honest I didn’t see anything coming,” he said. “I just wanted to execute my offense and get my shots that way.”
What was most impressive about Turner’s night was his ability to stretch defenses and hit the three with consistency. Turner, who considers shooting the three part of his everyday game, hit all three of his three-point attempts.
His outing was in stark contrast to what he did in New York when he failed to find an offensive rhythm in large part because he picked up four fouls in both games. He had just five points and five rebounds in 18 minutes against Iowa, and five points and seven rebounds in 17 minutes against Cal.
“It felt great to gain some confidence going into tougher competition,” he said. “Saint Francis was a great opponent. To play well against a solid team was great.
“I definitely needed a game like this. To be able to come out and execute in the game is great.”
Barnes was obviously pleased with Turner’s play.
“He’s got a repertoire of shots,” Barnes said. “We tell him that he has to get one that’s the shot.”
Barnes was asked which shot he’d like to see Turner take more of and he said his turnaround jumper.
“He gets it up so quick and so high,” Barnes said. “He has great touch.”
Barnes said he thought Turner settled down tonight and did a better job defensively, “especially with ball screens. He did a better job improving his angles.”*****
It was apparent entering this game that Cameron Ridley was likely going to have his way in the paint against a Saint Francis team that simply had no one near his size.
But seeing something on paper and actually taking advantage of it in the game are two totally separate things.
Fortunately for Ridley, and Texas, the 6-foot-9 junior established his dominance early and never laid off bullying his opponent inside.
Ridley, who came in averaging 7 points per game, had 13 at halftime on 6-of-7 shooting. He finished with 16 points on 7-of-8 shooting.
“In practice coaches emphasized playing inside-out,” Ridley said. “I wanted to use the game to work on things that we were doing in practice as far as getting inside position and getting close to the basket.”
Ridley will have a much tougher test against UConn on Sunday when he bodies up against Amida Brimah, who is 7-feet and 230 pounds. Brimah, a sophomore from Ghana, has a team-high 13 blocks through three games.*****
The Longhorns informed us just prior to tip-off that Javan Felix was nursing a left foot injury. He went through pre-game warmups and was available to play.
But Texas never did sub him in, opting to rest him for Sunday’s game at UConn.
” He turned his ankle the last home game before we went to New York,” Barnes said. “He just had to deal with it up in NY. We have to get him healthy. He probably could have played a little bit.”
Kendal Yancy got the start at point guard instead and finished with a career-high 12 points (5-of-10 shooting), six rebounds, and only two turnovers in a team-high 34 minutes.
He definitely stepped up,” Turner said. “That’s one thing we’ve been emphasized all week. With Isaiah out, it’s the next man up. Kendall stepped up in New York and that was great. He stepped up tonight. He got out of his comfort zone. We all have things to work on, but I was proud of him.”
Yancy was very effective attacking the glass. His lone offensive rebound ended with a reverse-put-back. He was also 2-of-3 from deep.
”I thought Kendal, his line is pretty good,” Barnes said. “He took a couple of shots that weren’t great shots.”*****
Barnett, who only saw three minutes against Iowa, finished 1-for-7 with his three points coming on an And-1 late in the game when he absorbed contact and finished a layup before making his free throw.
The athletic wing was active on the glass with four rebounds and also had two assists and a steal.
Croaker, meanwhile, went 1-for-5 (missed all four three-pointers) and also had two turnovers. He’s going to have to get better, quickly, if he wants to be a part of this rotation come Big 12 play.
”We told Damarcus and Jordan that we need those guys,” Barnes said. “You wouldn’t think what happened would happen [Taylor’s injury and Felix’s injured foot].”
Barnes referenced the game that Demarcus Holland put together – and just his all-around hustle – as something that these two players should emulate. Holland only had four points, but also finished with four rebounds, four assists and a steal playing his customary shutdown on-ball defense.
”I thought Demarcus Holland was unbelievable tonight,” Barnes said. “You talk about a guy that ran the show. I want to see those other guys match that intensity. Croaker came back in the second half and did a better job. I told them they should play like there is no tomorrow. Croaker did that in the second half.”*****
Jonathan Holmes gave scoring a rest on Tuesday and opted on dishing the ball instead.
The senior had a career-high five assists while only hitting 1-of-5 field goals (his lone three-point attempt). Holmes also had three rebounds but tied Ridley with a team-high four turnovers, which is very uncharacteristic of him.
The Longhorns will surely forgive him after what Holmes did in New York last week, which led to him being named Big 12 Player of the Week.
He earned his first career Big 12 weekly award after averaging 20.0 points and 9.0 rebounds per game in UT's wins against Iowa and Cal last week in New York City.
In Thursday's win against Iowa, he posted a team-high 19 points and five rebounds. Holmes then recorded a game-high 21 points, 13 rebounds and two blocks in Friday's victory against Cal.*****
Barnes said that Prince Ibeh tweaked his back early in the first half and asked to come out. He could have come back in, according to Barnes, but Texas chose to rest him because UT is trying to get everyone healthy.
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*****Longhorns 2015 QB commitment Zach Gentry's junior highlights
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