AUSTIN, Texas, Feb. 26 (UPI) -- A.J. Abrams scored five of his 24 points from the foul line over the final 2:12 Wednesday, helping No. 24 Texas hold on to defeat Texas Tech 87-81.
The Longhorns had to rally from a five-point halftime deficit to win for the fourth time in five games. Texas went on a 14-7 run early in the second period to take the lead and survived down the stretch thanks in part to Abrams' free throw shooting.
Texas made 31 free throws overall in 43 tries.
Texas Tech played without Coach Pat Knight, who was suspended one game for publicly criticizing game officials. Assistant Chris Beard ran the team in Knight's absence.
Damion James added 20 points for Texas (19-8, 8-5 Big 12), which rescued its fading NCAA Tournament chances last weekend with a victory over Oklahoma.
Texas Tech, losers of nine out of 10, was led by Nick Okorie with 24 points. The Raiders fell to 12-16 for the season and to 2-11 in the Big 12.