DES MOINES, Iowa — Sir’Jabari Rice shot Texas into the second round of the NCAA Tournament with a career-high seven 3-pointers, pushing the No. 2-seeded Longhorns past 15-seed Colgate 81-61 on Thursday night in a Midwest Region matchup.
Rice had 23 points and six rebounds and the Longhorns shot 56.5 percent from 3-point range while clamping Colgate’s prodigious perimeter offense. The Raiders missed 12 of 15 tries behind the 3-point line; Texas was 13 of 23.
“I don’t necessarily feel hot because I missed three. But, I mean, I’m just trying to keep it going,” said Rice.
Marcus Carr and Dylan Disu had 17 points apiece for Texas (27-8). The Longhorns, looking for their first Sweet 16 appearance since 2008, await the winner of Penn State-Texas A&M for a second-round date Saturday.
The Raiders trailed 66-51 before a 6-0 run cut the lead to nine points at the under-8 media timeout. But the Longhorns surged ahead with a jumper from Carr and a three-point play from Disu to extend the Texas lead to 73-59 with 3:44 to play.
Texas ended the game with a 13-2 run.
Ryan Moffatt and Keegan Records each had 13 points for Colgate, while Patriot League Player of the Year Tucker Richardson was held to nine points on 4-of-11 shooting.
The Raiders (26-9) exited in the first round of the tournament for the sixth time in six appearances, including four since 2019.
Colgate, first in the nation in 3-point field goal percentage (40.8) entering the tournament, failed to stay connected to Rice in a scintillating shooting display in the first half. Rice made five 3-pointers in a nine-possession stretch to bump the Texas lead from 18-12 to 35-18.
“We watched a lot of film over the last week,” Colgate coach Matt Langel said. “They assisted 10 times on 13 made three-point shots. Some of them we were — we picked that poison to give them a chance to make those shots, and they really stepped up and buried them, made it hard for us, put us in a hole.”
Texas connected on 8 of 15 from 3-point range in the first half.
Richardson, a fifth-year senior playing in his 155th career game, became Colgate’s all-time leader in 3-pointers in the first half with 268. He’s also the all-time leader in steals and assists.
–By Jeff Reynolds, Field Level Media