- Associated Press - Wednesday, January 29, 2014

WACO, Texas (AP) - After scoring the game’s first 19 points, No. 9 Baylor was already on the way to a lopsided victory over Texas Tech.

The Big 12-leading and youthful Lady Bears had another big run to start the second half.

Odyssey Sims scored 25 points in team-high 26 minutes of play to lead five double-figure scorers, three of them freshman, and the Lady Bears cruised to a 92-43 victory Wednesday night.

“If you could have that every night, you’d be hard to beat. It’s sharing the basketball,” coach Kim Mulkey said. “I think our freshmen are playing with as much confidence as they have had all year, and it’s good to see. They are taking shots, they’re not turning the ball over. They’re helping us on the defensive end, and they’re doing it at the right time.”

Nina Davis, already one of the league’s top freshmen, had 13 points, while Khadijiah Cave had 11 and Ieshia Small 10. Makenzie Robertson, the other senior starter with Sims, had 11 with three 3-pointers for Baylor (17-3, 7-1 Big 12). Sune Agbuke had 10 rebounds.

“We’ve got a good freshman group, and I think our bench play did an outstanding job … they produced when they went in,” Sims said. “It’s just fun to watch.”

The Lady Bears have won their last three games, rebounding nicely from the team’s first back-to-back losses in four years - since Brittney Griner’s freshman season.

Texas Tech (6-14, 0-9) missed its first 12 shots before Marina Lizarazu, one of four freshmen who played for the Lady Raiders, made an impressive drive for a layup more than 9 minutes into the game.

“I thought we played very timid, scared at the start,” first-year Tech coach Candi Whitaker said. “I thought Marina came in and gave us a spark. She doesn’t know Baylor, and you could tell. She just came in and made plays, got to the rim, found shooters.”

The Lady Raiders lost their 10th game in a row while playing their fourth consecutive game against a Top 25 opponent. They were coming off an 85-76 overtime loss at home four days earlier against then-No. 20 Iowa State, but it’s been more than a decade since Whitaker was a starting point guard for two NCAA Sweet Sixteen teams at Tech.

The Lady Bears had another big run to start the second half, with Sims making two 3-pointers as they scored 16 consecutive points over a 5-minutes span. Robertson also had two 3s in that stretch before Nina Davis‘ run-capping layup made it 63-22.

“I told them at halftime, we really haven’t put two good halves together,” Mulkey said. “I reminded them of what we did against K-State, we were up 39 and held on to a 23-point lead. And you can’t be a good team if you’re going to do that. I thought tonight, we were focused … It was good everybody. I thought we got starters off the floor and yet got a lot of experience for other players too.”

Amber Battle led Texas Tech with 11 points, eight below her season average.

Sims, second nationally with 29.7 points going into the Tech game, was coming off a season-low 17 points on 7-of-27 shooting against Oklahoma State. But she had the game-winning three-point play with 3.8 seconds left in overtime as the Lady Bears beat the then-No. 8 Cowgirls 69-66 to get back into the Top 10.

Robertson drove for a layup to give Baylor a 7-0 lead, at which time the Lady Raiders had three turnovers and three fouls without even getting off a shot.

Texas Tech’s first shot didn’t even hit the rim, and was followed by another turnover that lead to a layup by Davis that made it 9-0 just more than 2 ½ minutes into the game.

Within 2 minutes after Lizarazu finally scored for the Lady Raiders with 10:43 left in the first half, they got consecutive 3-pointers from a pair of freshman - Minta Spears, another starter, and Jasmine Caston. That got them within 23-8, but the closest they got after that was 13 points before being down 47-22 at halftime.

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times is switching its third-party commenting system from Disqus to Spot.IM. You will need to either create an account with Spot.im or if you wish to use your Disqus account look under the Conversation for the link "Have a Disqus Account?". Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More

Click to Hide