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Daily Bears Report 12/2 - Updated 12/3

Update includes Baylor vs. Xavier Preview video and volleyball update. Volleyball takes on San Diego tonight in NCAA Championship Tournament. Lady Bears down Abilene Christian. Football vs. West Virginia Hype and Preview Videos. Less than 2,000 tickets remain for Men’s Basketball top ten match.

NCAA Basketball: Sam Houston State at Baylor Sean Pokorny-USA TODAY Sports

Saturday’s Events

Sunday’s Events

Baylor Athletics Update Video

Today’s Events

Women's Volleyball, vs San Diego, 7:30 PM

Baylor Volleyball: Get To Know - Favorite Dance Move


  • Much like a hotel wake-up call, timing matters for the volleyball setter. The setter must be precise with both where — and when — she puts the ball. She wants to float it into the wheelhouse of her hitters at the ideal moment. No sooner, no later. WacoTrib’s Brice Cherry has this story at BearsExtra.

So when a setter’s timing is off, life is thrown askew. Such was the case for Baylor’s Morgan Reed, who spent three years toiling in a waiting room of sorts.

Hurry up and wait. That was her life.

“It was always going to be competitive,” Reed said. “I knew that coming in to Baylor, that I was going to have to fight for a position and fight for my role on my team. But it was hard at times to sit back and watch. I don’t think until this year I’ve played at my highest potential.”

Unleashed from the shackles of a backup role, Reed has flourished for Baylor’s NCAA tournament-bound team in this, her senior year. She has delivered 1,259 assists, a number that ranks 20th nationally. It also amounts to around 400 more assists than she had accumulated in her three previous years in Waco, which underscores just how vital she has become.

“What Morgan has done in setting that (attack) up has been great,” Baylor coach Ryan McGuyre said. “Really her maturity and her leadership. She has set the tone in terms of the competitiveness in the gym that we need. We’ve seen great fight out of our team and that fight has been exemplified through Morgan from Day One.”

  • Baylor volleyball (21-11) opens up its play in the 2016 NCAA Volleyball Championship, facing the No. 14 San Diego Toreros (24-5) tonight at 5:30 p.m. PT/7:30 p.m. CT in Pauley Pavilion on the host, No. 8 UCLA campus. From Baylor Bears dot com.

Baylor is making its first postseason appearance since 2011, ending a five-year NCAA tournament drought in head coach Ryan McGuyre’s second season with the team.

BU is looking for the program’s first win in the tournament since 2009, also in the Los Angeles Regional, downing host-school and then-No. 9 UCLA in four sets to advance to the team’s first and only Sweet 16.

Baylor has faced San Diego just once before, losing in four sets on Sep. 8, 1988 in San Diego.

Friday’s match will be streamed on the Pac-12 website by UCLA, at

For this and all other Baylor NCAA matches, fans can tune into the live internet radio broadcast on

Keep up with the team all season long by following Baylor Volleyball’s official accounts on Twitter (@BaylorVball), Facebook (Baylor Volleyball), Instagram (@BaylorVolleyball), and Snapchat (@BaylorVball).

  • Friday, Dec. 2, 2016 at 5:30 p.m. PT/7:30 p.m. CT
  • Pauley Pavilion | Los Angeles, Calif.
  • TV: and the Pac-12 Now app
  • Talent: TBA
  • Audio: (Paid)
  • Talent: Larry Little and Jonathan Hill
  • Live Stats:
  • 2015 Record: 17-13
  • 2016 Record: 21-11
  • Head Coach: Ryan McGuyre (2nd season)
  • All-Time Record vs. USD: 0-1
  • All-Time Record vs. USD in neutral site: Never met
  • 2015 Record: 22-10
  • 2016 Record: 24-5
  • Head Coach: Jennifer Petrie (13th season)


  • Baylor head women’s tennis coach Joey Scrivano announced the addition of Angelina Shakhraichuk to his 2017 recruiting class on Thursday. From Baylor Bears dot com.

The international standout is a native of Kiev, Ukraine.

Shakhraichuk has been ranked as high as No. 183 by the International Tennis Federation (ITF) and is currently rated No. 810 in singles and No. 760 in doubles by the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA).

“We are excited to welcome Angelina to our program and the Baylor family,” Scrivano said. “Angelina is a phenomenal athlete with an all-court game, great work ethic and positive mindset. She understands the developmental process, but is also prepared to come in and make an immediate impact. She will be a welcome addition to our team and has a bright future ahead of her at Baylor.”

Appearing as a finalist at the RPM Junior Open (Grade 1 tournament) in Vestec, Czech Republic was a highlight of her junior career. Shakhraichuk earned an upset victory over her 42nd-ranked ITF opponent in the semifinal round to advance.

Shakhraichuk has won two $10,000 doubles titles, one in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt, and another in Chisinau, Moldova, in 2016. She also reached finals in two more $10,000 doubles tournaments.

In singles, her top result occurred in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt, where she defeated the 334th-ranked WTA player in the second round of the main draw. Shakhraichuk was a finalist in the tournament.

“I am very excited to join the Baylor family,” Shakhraichuk said. “I chose Baylor because of its outstanding reputation for developing tennis players and the connection I made with the coaches. This is a great opportunity for me and I want to make the most of it. I can’t wait to be a part of the team, contribute and help the team become stronger.”

She is the daughter of Suitlana and Vadym Shakhraichuk. Her father, Vadym, was a professional sportsman and is currently an ice hockey coach. Shakhraichuk lists her family as the biggest influence in her life.

Lady Bears Basketball

There’s enough talent on Baylor’s roster that it’s safe to assume no one spot is always safe. WacoTrib’s Tony Adame has the complete story at BearsExtra.

And when the Lady Bears are in the thick of it and not playing up to coach Kim Mulkey’s standards, no lineup is safe, either.

“We’re that good and have that much depth,” Mulkey said. “So you give somebody else a shot if there’s turnovers or something you don’t like.”

Mulkey went for wholesale change early, pulling her entire starting five for most of the first quarter after a sluggish start – four turnovers in the first seven possessions. It was a move that seemed to re-energize No. 4 Baylor’s lineup on the way to a 79-34 win over Abilene Christian on Thursday night at the Ferrell Center.

Mulkey pulled her starters with 6:22 left in the first quarter and a 6-2 lead, and the group of reserves that came in held serve until Mulkey brought back in the starters, save one, with around one minute left.

“I thought we were a little lethargic at first, but we had some people come off the bench to give us a boost,” Mulkey said. “That was just in the first half, though. I thought in the second half we played pretty good because (Abilene Christian) only scored 12 points, so we picked it up quite a bit.”

And it was the only starter who didn’t come back in right away – senior forward Nina Davis – who ended up making the biggest impact. Davis finished with a game-high 18 points to go with five rebounds, four assists and three steals.

Several times, Davis beat Abilene Christian (3-4) down the floor for transition buckets, dishing the ball and even mixed in a highlight-reel reverse layup late in the game.

Kim Mulkey's got enough options on her bench that if the Baylor coach doesn't like what she's seeing, there's a good chance that change is coming. Story by Jerry Hill of the Baylor Bear Foundation.

Not even 3 ½ minutes into Thursday's game against Abilene Christian, Mulkey had seen enough to swap out five-for-five, like a line change in hockey.

"Seven possessions, and we had four turnovers," she said. "If there's anything that drives a coach crazy, it's turnovers. Missed shots don't drive me nuts. Turnovers, that's one less possession we have to score when you just turn it over. Give somebody else a shot."

Message sent.

Led by Nina Davis with 18 points and sophomore post Kalani Brown with a double-double (15 points, 11 rebounds), the fourth-ranked Lady Bears (8-1) reeled off their sixth straight win by routing the visiting Abilene Christian Wildcats, 79-34.

"Look, we're not going to play great every night," said Mulkey, whose team has won six in a row by an average margin of 45 points since a 72-61 loss at second-ranked UConn. "But if you'll pick it up on the defensive end, when you miss shots and you seem lethargic, you've got to live with it."

After jumping out to a 14-3 lead in the first six minutes, the Lady Bears saw it whittled to 19-12 going into the second quarter. And the Wildcats (3-4) still had it within single digits at 25-17 when Sydney Shelstead drained a 3-pointer with about 5 ½ minutes left in the half.

But, the Lady Bears blew it out to 17 by the break (34-17) and doubled that with a 17-0 run over an extended 6 ½-minute stretch at the end of the third quarter and start of the fourth. Freshman guard Natalie Chou completed a three-point play to put Baylor on top, 65-30, with 7:38 left in the game.

"We got killed in transition," said ACU coach Julie Goodenough, whose team was outscored 41-12 in the second half. "We were executing pretty well, but just didn't hit shots, and they were beating us in the track meet in the middle of the floor and scored so many points in transition. They shot 83 percent (10-of-12) in the fourth quarter. I didn't feel like we were crashing the boards particularly well, but we weren't getting back on defense, either, and they really capitalized on that."

That's when Baylor is at its best, with guards Alexis Jones and Kristy Wallace and even Davis leading fast breaks.

"Oh, it's fun," the 5-11 Davis said of the transition game. "Being able to think I'm a point guard sometimes and dish out a couple assists, it's always great. I love to get it to KK (Khadijah Cave, especially. She's always out running. When we run full court and it's 2-on-1 or whatever, it's show time."

Davis has struggled out of the gates this season, failing to score in double figures in three of the first six games and averaging just 10.5 points coming into Thursday's game. But this was vintage Davis, weaving through the lane and willing off-balance, unorthodox shots to somehow go through the net.

She was 8-of-10 from the field and 2-for-2 from the line, finishing with 18 points, five boards, four assists and three steals in 26 minutes.

"We have so many different weapons that even when I'm having a bad game, we have other people that are going to pick me up," Davis said. "You weather the storm, and eventually the sun's going to come out again."

The smaller Wildcats were no match for the Lady Bears' front line rotation that includes the 6-7 Brown, 6-4 sophomore Beatrice Mompremier, the 6-3 Cave and 6-4 freshman Lauren Cox. Baylor dominated points in the paint, 54-14, and finished with a 40-29 rebounding advantage.

Cave added 12 points, while Cox and senior guard Alexis Prince had seven points apiece. Shelstead, ACU's tallest starter at 6-1, led the Wildcats with nine points and seven boards but also had six of her team's 20 turnovers.

"I would be shocked if this team was not playing in the Final Four in Dallas later this year," Goodenough said of the Lady Bears. "They have all the parts. They have perimeter play, and they definitely have size, and then they have the subs to go along with that. It is a well-balanced team. We knew the size was going to be tough for us to deal with. . . . I know they got beat by UConn, and I predict when the face UConn again in the playoffs, it will be a different story."

  • Baylor, which is already 3-1 against ranked teams, will face No. 22/25 Tennessee (4-2) in the Big 12/SEC Challenge at 1 p.m. CST Saturday in Knoxville, Tenn. The Lady Vols lost back-to-back games to Penn State and Virginia Tech before trouncing Tennessee State, 86-36, on Wednesday.
Davis and Jones Being Considered for Wade Trophy
  • Senior forward Nina Davis and senior guard Alexis Jones are two of 25 players recognized on the ‘Wade Watch’ list of candidates for the 2017 Wade Trophy, the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association announced Thursday. From Baylor Bears dot com.

Davis has been a finalist for the Wade Trophy twice in her career (2015, 2016), while Jones appears on the watch list for the first time in her career. The Lady Bears are the only Big 12 representatives on the list of 25, and Baylor is one of six teams in the country to have two players included.

The Wade Trophy – now in its 40th year – is the oldest and most prestigious national player of the year award in college women’s basketball. It is named in honor of the late, legendary Delta State University head coach Lily Margaret Wade, who won three straight national championships with the Lady Statesmen.

A two-time consensus All-American, Davis is averaging 10.5 points, 3.9 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 0.9 steals per contest through eight games played. The preseason Big 12 Player of the Year selection has led the Lady Bears in points, rebounds, assists and steals once this year and has scored in double figures five times. The Memphis, Tenn., native has also been named a preseason Associated Press All-American for the second consecutive season, to the Naismith Trophy Watch List, and to the preseason All-Big 12 first team.

She is a three-time All-Big 12 first team selection in her career and surpassed the 2,000 career points mark in the fourth game of her senior season. Davis is fifth in scoring all-time with 2,037 and eighth in rebounding all-time with 897 in her career.

Jones leads the Lady Bears in scoring, averaging 16.4 points per game and has made 60 percent of her three-point field goal attempts. The honorable mention All-American also averages 4.9 assists, 3.6 rebounds and 1.7 steals through eight games played. The Irving, Texas, native, has led Baylor in steals four times, points on three occasions, assists twice and rebounds once. She has recorded three 20-point performances and one double-double, the seventh of her career.

Jones, last year’s Big 12 Newcomer of the Year, has been named to the Nancy Leiberman Award Watch List, to the Naismith Trophy Watch List and to the preseason All-Big 12 first team. She also earned the second Big 12 Player of the Week honor of her career on Nov. 29, after helping the Lady Bears to a 4-0 week, which included two wins over ranked opponents and a Gulf Coast Showcase Championship.

The ‘Wade Watch’ list of candidates for the Wade Trophy is selected by the WBCA NCAA Division I Coaches All-America Selection Committee. The committee will review the current list of 25 in January to determine if additional players will be added based on their play during the first half of the 2016-17 season.

Wallace and Jones Pushing for Greatness
  • The challenge was thrown down last week, before the Baylor women’s basketball team headed to Estero, Fla., for three games at the Gulf Coast Showcase. BearsExtra has the complete story.

Baylor coach Kim Mulkey was worried about the guards her team might face – particularly Ohio State’s Kelsey Mitchell, who she thought might be one of the best point guards in the country.

Mulkey wondered if any one player on her team would even be able to match up with the reigning Big Ten Player of the Year.

Challenge accepted.

“I thought (Mitchell) might be the hardest point guard to guard in the country,” Mulkey said. “Foul line to foul line, she’s so quick, has extra range on the three and can take you off the dribble … but I’ve got two pretty good point guards up here with me, so I’m a little biased.”

After No. 4 Baylor (7-1) ran the table for the Gulf Coast Showcase title, including wins over No. 15 DePaul and an 85-68 win over No. 9 Ohio State in the championship game, Mulkey’s idea of what her backcourt might look like this season has a much more concrete form – a two-fisted combo of junior Kristy Wallace and senior Alexis Jones.

Wallace followed up her 15-assist outing against DePaul in the semifinals by matching up with Mitchell in the championship game and held her to 17 points – well below here 23.3 average – on 5-of-20 shooting, including 1 of 6 on three-pointers.

“I took that game as a challenge, to get out and do what I could for my team,” Wallace said. “Credit to the (posts) for their help, because when (Mitchell) penetrated, you know having those bigs there is something the back of your mind when you’re in … that’s a big key, so all the credit to them.”


• In its final regular season game, Baylor travels to Morgantown, W. Va., for a 2:30 p.m. CT contest against 14th-ranked West Virginia on FOX Sports 1. • Baylor looks to snap a 5-game losing streak - its first since 2007 when the Bears suffered 8-straight losses to end the year.• Baylor and West Virginia will meet for the 5th time Saturday. The series is tied 2-2, but WVU has won the only two meetings of the series in Morgantown (70-63, 2012 and 41-27, 2014). • Last season, the Bears cruised to a 24-point win at McLane Stadium, thanks in part to a 3 TD catches by Corey Coleman and a 21-point third quarter.

Thanks for the Memories

Howard Johnson of Waco, whose dying wish to attend a Baylor football game was fulfilled last September, has lost his long battle with cancer. From KWTX TV 10.

Johnson, who died on Nov. 10, was laid to rest on Nov. 19.

He was 71.

Johnson, who had kidney cancer and knew his time was limited, was a devoted Baylor fan.

"I watch them all the time on TV. That was the only way I got to see them,” he told KWTX last year.

His chaplain, Sarah Miller, reached out to people on Facebook and got in touch with Tom Hill, the now former associate athletic director for Baylor and in a heartbeat, Hill got them tickets for the Baylor-Lamar game on Sept. 12, 2015.

Someone else who saw her post gave her game day wear for Johnson, and another offered a tour of the stadium.

Johnson also got to meet then Chancellor and President Ken Starr and Starr’s wife, Alice.

He said afterward that the experience was one he would never forget.

From Our Daily Bears: Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends of Howard Johnson.

Watch Parties


OBF said something about liking the downtown mall in Grand Rapids, that he is taking the weekend off but might post a Lady Bears vs. Tennessee game preview Sunday morning.

Sic ‘em Bears! Win ‘em all for Howard Johnson!