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Bulls slip on C-USA doormat

With the conference tournament this week, South Florida was looking to carry some momentum into the postseason.

On paper it looked good for the Bulls, who were playing a TCU team that had one win in its past nine and was in last place in Conference USA.

The Horned Frogs, however, weren't going down quietly.

South Florida continued its road woes when TCU, behind strong play from its seniors, beat the Bulls 75-63 in the regular-season finale Saturday at Daniel Myer Coliseum.

Looking for a second straight series sweep of the Horned Frogs, South Florida was frustrated by TCU's defense for most of the game.

Trailing by seven with seven minutes left in the first half, TCU used a technical foul on Bulls coach Seth Greenberg to build a 13-point lead with 5:26 left in the half.

Behind 36-27 at the half, South Florida climbed back into the game behind five 3-pointers in the first 12 minutes of the second half and pulled within 50-49.

The Horned Frogs built the lead back to double digits when Bingo Merriex hit a 3-pointer to beat the shot clock and Corey Santee hit two free throws to make it 62-51 with 4:14 left.

Bulls forward Yusuf Baker fouled out with almost 10 minutes left. Baker scored nine and pulled down 11 rebounds.

Baker's early exit was one of several problems for the Bulls' inside game. The Horned Frogs' post players have had trouble against taller opponents this season, but they dominated the Bulls for most of the game.

Bulls center Will McDonald, who went in with four straight double doubles and five straight double-digit scoring games, was held to nine points and eight rebounds. But McDonald wasn't the only Bull scorer hindered by the Horned Frogs.

In the previous meeting with TCU, South Florida's Reggie Kohn led the way with 21 points, but Saturday the Horned Frogs defense focused on Kohn and allowed the guard to score only five in the first half.

Kohn, who finished with 13 points, has had many memorable nights against the Horned Frogs. He has his career highs in scoring and assists against TCU, and Saturday he became the school's all-time leader in 3-point shooting with 245 with his third 3-pointer of the game five minutes into the second half.

TCU was led by seniors Junior Blount and Merriex, who were playing their last regular-season games as Horned Frogs. Merriex scored 18, nine in the first half, while Blount scored 19, 11 in the first.