Texas comes up short in Sweet 16 bid in valiant effort to contain Purdue, 81-71

Christina Huang, Sports Desk Editor

The last time Marcus Carr faced Purdue, he put up 19 points in a win for Minnesota. 

On Sunday night, the Longhorn senior guard scored 23 points, but his effort was not enough to send Texas to the Sweet 16. 

No. 3-seed Purdue capitalized on errors from No. 6-seed Texas that marred the 81-71 loss in the second round of the NCAA tournament. The Longhorns’ excessive fouling resulted in 46 free-throw attempts for the Boilermakers, of which they made 33. Texas attempted only 12 free throws total.

“46-12 (free throws),” Texas head coach Chris Beard said. “There (haven’t) been a lot of games in the NCAA Tournament like that.” 

But Purdue head coach Matt Painter had no issue with the amount of free-throw attempts his team took. 

“We lived at the free-throw line,” Painter said. “(You) can’t ask for more.” 

Despite the staggering difference in free-throw attempts, the Longhorns stayed within reach after a Carr three-pointer narrowed the Purdue lead to 74-71 with 90 seconds remaining.

But a clutch 3-pointer from Purdue star guard Jaden Ivey followed by four free throws ended Texas’ chances to come back and nab a spot in the Sweet 16.

“We responded a little bit too late,” senior guard Andrew Jones said. “But we were still in the fight. It just showed how tough we are, how determined we were to stay in this game.”

Despite the loss, the Longhorns did best the Boilermakers in some key metrics: winning the turnover battle 12 to seven and limiting an explosive Purdue offense to only 17 attempted 3-pointers. 

Jones ended his night with 17 points, two steals and two rebounds in what could be his final collegiate game. 

Even though Jones and Carr scored in double digits, the two guards needed more help. Senior forward Timmy Allen, Texas’ leading scorer in the regular season, fouled out with two points and 06:25 remaining. 

“Timmy Allen has been our leading scorer and rebounder this year,” Beard said. “He just wasn’t able to play his game tonight because of foul trouble.” 

Despite the bitter ending for Texas, Beard said he is proud of what his team has accomplished this season: a 22–12 record and the school’s first NCAA Tournament win since 2014. 

“There’s no quit in those guys,” Beard said. “That’s why I was so proud to be their coach this season.”