- By Shehan Jeyarajah Diehards
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.
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.
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.
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.
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