12/04 22:19 CST No. 5 Baylor women hand Missouri its first loss, 70-68
No. 5 Baylor women hand Missouri its first loss, 70-68
WACO, Texas (AP) --- NaLyssa Smith had her eighth consecutive double-double
with 25 points and 17 rebounds, and fifth-ranked Baylor handed Missouri its
first loss of the season, 70-68, in the Big 12/SEC Challenge on Saturday night.
"That first half for us was probably one of the rougher halves of basketball
we've had so far this season," Missouri coach Robin Pingeton said. "I thought
we were able to regroup, recalibrate and really came out and battled in that
Missouri, which trailed by nine at halftime, took its only lead of the game
with 7:11 left --- 60-57 on Haley Troup's 3-pointer. The Tigers then didn't
score for nearly five minutes, while Baylor (8-1) got 12 points in a row to go
back ahead to stay, though Lauren Hansen's 3-pointer pulled Mizzou within one
with 34 seconds left.
"I'm proud of the grit of our team, I'm proud of the resiliency," Pingeton
said. "But this is a hard one when you're right there."
Aijha Blackwell, who was a USA Basketball teammate with Smith, had 20 points
and 16 rebounds for Missouri (8-1) before fouling out with 3:56 left. Troup
finished with 16 points and Hansen had 10. Hansen missed a 3-pointer with 20
seconds left and a potential game-tying jumper as time expired.
The Bears hadn't played Missouri since the Tigers left the Big 12 for the SEC
after the 2011-12 season.
Smith, the preseason AP All-American, scored half of Baylor's points in the
game-clinching 12-0 run.
"I feel like we feed off of just seeing each other make the baskets, see the
ball go in," Smith said. "Anytime that we do score it's like high energy."
Smith had a go-ahead three-point play with 6:12 left, when she was fouled when
making a putback short jumper and added the free throw to make it 61-60.
"NaLyssa is just such a powerful player and is surrounded by some tremendous
players," Pingeton said.
Caitlin Bickle added 11 points for Baylor and Sarah Andrews 10.
Missouri: The Tigers had beaten three teams that went to the NCAA tournament
last season, but not one was from a major conference. ... Missouri's only lead
came after a 10-1 run in which Troup scored all of the points --- including her
only two made 3s in the game.
Baylor: The Bears won their 65th consecutive nonconference home game since a
66-55 loss to UConn on Jan. 13, 2014. ... Baylor had a 36-27 lead after Smith
made a 15-foot jumper to end the first half, and the only time the Bears
trailed after scoring the game's first seven points was for a minute in the
Baylor is solidly in the top five after winning its only two games this week.
The victory over an undefeated Missouri team came four days after a 73-28
victory when the Bears held Morehead State to single-digit scoring in all four
Missouri: At Missouri State on Friday night.
Baylor: Hosts Alcorn State on Wednesday. The game starts at 11 a.m. CST, with
thousands of local elementary-school kids expected to be in the stands.
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