Big 12 Tournament: Baylor struggles with West Virginia press in 78-65 loss


Baylor basketball needed a win to stay alive in the Big 12 Tournament. However, the Bears turned it over 21 times to fall 78-65 to 3-seed West Virginia.

The Bears got off to a hot start, but struggled to maintain it against the swarming West Virginia defense. Baylor shot just 42 percent from the field and 30 percent from the 3-point line, as the Bears failed to beat the Mountaineers for the third time this season.

Now, head coach Scott Drew’s team has to sweat it out at home on Selection Sunday. The Bears had nice wins over Creighton, Kansas and Texas Tech this season. However, there were also blowouts against West Virginia and Florida.

Baylor falls to 18-14 heading into Selection Sunday. The Mountaineers advance to face off against 2-seed Texas Tech in the Big 12 Tournament semifinals.

3 who mattered

  • F Nuni Omot: Baylor saw every shade of Omot in this game. He started by hitting several shots and scoring 8 early points. He ended with 7 turnovers – and just those 8 early points. Baylor needed more from him.
  • G Daxter Miles Jr: Today was just Miles’ day. He shot just 29.3 percent from the 3-point line during the season, but nailed 5 of his 6 3-point attempts against Baylor to finish with 19 points. He also added 6 rebounds and 4 assists before fouling out.
  • G Manu Lecomte: Lecomte has played much better since PG Jake Lindsey helped move him off the ball. The senior finished with 27 points on just 12 shot attempts. However, 22 of those points came while down double-figures. His effort came far too late.

Turning point

Baylor got off to a quick start against the Mountaineers and took an 18-9 lead. However, things got ugly after that. West Virginia guard Jevon Carter nailed a wild 3-pointer at the end of a shot clock, and things turned from there.

West Virginia ultimately ended the half on a 20-5 run, including a buzzer-beating half court heave at the end of the first period. Things only got uglier from there.

3 observations

  • Baylor’s guard play is not good. The Bears turned over the ball 22 times and proved to be completely unable to get things going against the press. Baylor lost
  • West Virginia produces some ugly games. This one was no different. These two teams combined for 38 turnovers and 51 personal fouls in just 40 minutes of basketball. At times, it was unwatchable.
  • Baylor coach Scott Drew is known for his adjustments. Unfortunately, this roster doesn’t seem to have many available. The Bears play with just eight men in their rotation, as shooting guard Tyson Jolly has not shown enough to earn minutes. Not having the typical depth of a Scott Drew roster shows. The Bears just aren’t as versatile.

The number: 8:36

Baylor basketball went 8 minutes and 36 seconds without a field goal to close out the first half. The Mountaineers leveraged it into a 17-3 run to take a 29-23 halftime lead.

What’s next for Baylor basketball

Baylor now heads back to Waco to wait for Selection Sunday. The Bears are firmly on the bubble for an NCAA Tournament berth. ESPN’s BPI gives the Bears less than a 10 percent chance to get into the field after losing to the Mountaineers. However, Baylor still has an elite strength of schedule and several Tier 1 wins. Scott Drew and company will be sweating.

The post Big 12 Tournament: Baylor struggles with West Virginia press in 78-65 loss appeared first on Diehards.


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