- The Washington Times - Friday, March 13, 2009

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Jessica Morrow and Melissa Jones each scored 15 points and No. 7 Baylor rallied from a 15-point second-half deficit to beat Oklahoma State 67-62 on Friday night in a quarterfinal game of the Big 12 Conference tournament.

Oklahoma State (16-15) led 43-28 with 16:33 left, but Baylor (25-5) used a 10-0 run to close the gap and took the lead for the first time since the opening moments with 1:51 left on two free throws by Kelli Griffin. The Bears scored the game’s final eight points.

Baylor will play either No. 18 Iowa State or No. 23 Texas in the semifinals on Saturday. Oklahoma State _ once ranked in the Top 25 _ will find out Monday if it will be invited to play in the Women’s National Invitation Tournament. The Cowgirls have lost 10 of their last 12 games.

Baylor, which beat Oklahoma State twice during the regular season, played for the third straight game without scoring and rebounding leader Danielle Wilson, who is out due to a knee injury. The Bears are 2-1 in Wilson’s absence.

Andrea Riley led Oklahoma State with 17 points but went 4-of-21 from the field and made several critical errors in the final moments, while Shaunte Smith had 13 points and 10 rebounds for her eighth double-double of the season.

Oklahoma State’s biggest lead came when Taylor Hardeman hit a 3-pointer, making it 43-28 with 16:33 left. But Baylor cut the gap to 43-38 on Morghan Medlock’s basket with 13:09 left.

Baylor tied the game at 54 with 6:19 left on a 19-foot jumper by Medlock. Oklahoma State scored the next six points, with two free throws by Megan Byford giving the Cowgirls a 60-54 lead with 5:01 left, but managed only two points after that, two free throws by Melinda Mercado with 2:29 left.

Griffin’s free throws put Baylor ahead 63-62. Riley threw a high pass that Smith couldn’t corral and the ball sailed out of bounds. Then Riley was called for a charge while driving to the basket with 25.8 seconds left with the Cowgirls still trailing by one.

Morrow hit two free throws to give Baylor a 65-62 lead with 13.7 seconds left. Riley brought the ball downcourt and passed to Hardeman, who passed up a 3-point attempt and threw the ball back to Riley, who airballed a 3-pointer.

Jones, who also had eight rebounds, made two free throws with 2.8 seconds left for the final margin. Medlock scored 14 points for Baylor, while Rachel Allison had five points and 10 rebounds.

Oklahoma State put together one of its best halves all season while taking a 37-26 lead over the Bears. The Cowgirls outrebounded Baylor 28-17 and committed only three turnovers while holding the Bears to 11-of-31 shooting.

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