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Daily Bears Report 1/15/17

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Photo Gallery: No. 1 Baylor downs No. 25 K-State. Memory Lane: Seth Russell Highlights. Zamora declares for early NFL draft.

NCAA Basketball: Baylor at Kansas State Scott Sewell-USA TODAY Sports

Today’s Events

Track & Field

  • On the opening day of the 2017 indoor season, the Baylor track and field team had a pair of runner-up finishes at the Texas A&M Team Invitational Friday at Gilliam Indoor Track and Field Stadium. From BearsExtra.

In the women’s distance medley relay, the crew of Alison Andrews-Paul, Kaitlynn Lindsey, Maggie Montoya and Lindsey Bradley posted a time of 11:33.64 for second place behind Texas (11:33.55) and ahead of Texas A&M (11:33.89).

Jordan West was the lone individual competitor on the day, placing second in the 5,000-meters with a time of 15:12.38.

The men’s distance medley crew of Matthew Parham, Robert Dutton, Brandon Moore and TJ Sugg finished fourth with a time of 10:10.10, which is only 3.43 seconds slower than the time Baylor ran at last year’s Big 12 Indoor Championship.

Made up of all freshman, the Baylor women’s ‘B’ DMR crew of Anna West, Emma Bakke, Gabby Satterlee and Sydney Gandy finished sixth with a time of 12:26.66.

  • To finish out its season-opening indoor meet, the Baylor track and field team tallied six event titles at the Texas A&M Team Invitational Saturday. From Baylor Bears dot com.

Competing for the second straight day at Gilliam Indoor Track Stadium, Baylor's women's squad racked up 128 points for a second-place team finish, while the men were third with 97 points.

“We are extremely excited as a staff. You don’t want to get your expectations too high to start a season, but we had some great performances today that will go down as some of the top marks in the country. Overall, it was just a great day, but we won six events and came close in a whole bunch of others.” - head coach Todd Harbour on the meet.

Baylor will now travel to the Rod McCravy Memorial in Lexington, Ky., on Jan. 20-21.

To stay current on all things Baylor Track, follow the team on Twitter: @Baylor.

Continue Reading . . .

Football

  • Two starting seasons cut too short. Thanks for the memories Seth Russell. You will always be remembered as the quarterback who saved Baylor football.
  • It didn't take long for Trevon Lewis to feel the energy exuding from Joey McGuire. From Houston Chronicle.

Forging his reputation at Cedar Hill, McGuire is part of Matt Rhule's new coaching staff at Baylor. Lewis is the Lamar defensive back who went from somewhat of a secret to one of the cornerstones of the Bears' 2017 recruiting class.

What a difference a month makes for both Baylor and Lewis.

Still riddled by the fallout from the school's sexual assault scandal that included the firing of coach Art Briles and led to an exodus by much of the 2016 recruiting class, Baylor only had one 2017 commitment as the calendar was about to turn to January.

That was Stafford safety Jalen Pitre. The next commitment came from Lewis, who falls in line with Lamar's reputation for boasting talent in the secondary.

Lewis might not have been the most talked about name in the city's recruiting class this year, but he owns hardware no one else does - the Touchdown Club of Houston Defensive Player of the Year award.

Continue Reading . . .

  • Baylor sophomore receiver Ishmael Zamora indicated that he plans to declare for the NFL draft on his Twitter account late Saturday night. From BearsExtra.

EXOS announced that it is accepting Zamora into its NFL Combine training program and Zamora followed with a tweet: “I made this decision for a lot of reasons and family is the No. 1. I loved Baylor just as much as the next guy but I couldn’t stay there forever.”

Continue Reading . . .

Man Bears Basketball

  • Kansas State has a history of beating No. 1 teams at Bramlage Coliseum with wins over Texas, Kansas and Oklahoma since 2010. Story at WacoTrib.

The Bears pulled away down the stretch for a 77-68 win over the No. 25 Wildcats on Saturday afternoon as Ish Wainright and Al Freeman contributed 15 points apiece.

“We took care of business today, and we had fun and played with a lot of energy,” Wainright said. “They’re a good team. They key was holding them to 43 percent shooting and we had less turnovers today.”

Gallery
  • Trailing midway through the second half, top-ranked Baylor suddenly surged to avoid a second straight loss. From the Boston Herald.

Manu Lecomte scored 26 points despite early foul trouble, Ish Wainright and Al Freeman had key baskets down the stretch and the Bears outlasted No. 25 Kansas State 77-68 on Saturday.

"We were able to get some stops and get into transition and get some good looks and make a couple of 3s," coach Scott Drew said.

Baylor Lady Bears Basketball

  • The No. 2/2 Baylor Lady Bears (16-1, 5-0), who are on a 14-game win streak, travel to meet Kansas (6-10, 0-5) for the second matchup of the season today in Lawrence, Kansas. Tipoff is set for 1 p.m. (CT) inside Allen Fieldhouse. From Baylor Bears dot com.

Sunday's game will be broadcast live on ESPNU with Roy Philpott (play-by-play) and Brooke Weisbrod (analyst) calling the action. Live audio is also available on the Baylor Sports Network, IMG College and ESPN 1660 AM in Waco. Rick May (play-by-play) and Lori Fogelman (analyst) are on the call.

Continue Reading . . .

  • There’s only one way to fully understand how difficult it is to play college basketball at a high level, and that’s to actually go through it. From BearsExtra.

At Baylor, that means dealing with pressure and lofty expectations from the very start – something that tests the resolve of even the most high-profile players.

As it turns out, Baylor freshman forward Lauren Cox’s resolve – and her response to adversity – are both pretty strong.

“Since she’s come back from Christmas, she’s back to being Lauren,” Baylor coach Kim Mulkey said. “I think a lot of freshmen, you put a lot of pressure on yourself. She wants to do good, she wants to please people and sometimes you can overthink things and worry about things … but she’s fine.

“I’ve coached many freshmen that were Players of the Year coming out of high school, and there’s only one that came in here relaxed and contributed right off the bat, and that was Brittney Griner. It just takes them awhile to adjust and get comfortable.”

Cox, 6-foot-4, seems as comfortable as any player on the roster for No. 2 Baylor (16-1, 5-0) ahead of Sunday afternoon’s game at last-place Kansas (6-10, 0-5), a team the Lady Bears beat 90-43 on Jan. 1 in Waco.

Coming off the bench, Cox’s numbers have gone up noticeably in Big 12 play from the nonconference schedule. The top recruit in the nation in 2016 out of Flower Mound High, she’s averaged 9.4 points and 4.3 rebounds this season against 11.6 points and 4.6 rebounds in the Big 12.

Continue Reading . . .

Baylor Lady Bears Tennis

  • After waiting out a rain delay, which postponed the tournament by nearly a day and a half, the Baylor women's tennis team played its way to a 4-2 record at the National Collegiate Tennis Classic on Saturday. From Baylor Bears dot com.

Sophomore Karina Traxler shut down Kristen Venter of USC in dominant fashion, 6-0, 6-0, in the opening round to advance to the second, where she overcame adversity to earn the upset victory. Up 3-2 against tournament No. 2 seed and the No. 32 rated player nationally, Carla Tur Mari of Oklahoma State, rain delayed Traxler's match. She remained focused and finished the job following the break, earning the 6-4, 7-5 final victory. It marks the first win over a ranked opponent of her collegiate career.

Freshman Angelina Shakhraichuk, who joined the team in January, made her Baylor debut with a win in straight sets, 6-2, 6-1, over Katharina Kukaras from the University of San Diego. She advanced to the second round, where she fell to the tournament's No. 3 seed and No. 46 nationally ranked player Jessica Failla of USC, 6-1, 6-2.

Squaring off against the tournament No. 1 seed and No. 18 nationally ranked opponent in Lauren Marker of Arizona, senior Rhiann Newborn battled to earn the tie-breaker in the first set, 7-6 (5), before falling in the next two, 6-3, 6-2. Following the difficult loss, Newborn rebounded with a 6-0, 7-6 (6) win in consolation singles play over Fatima Bizhukova of Wichita State.

"The rain delay threw us off a bit today, but going 4-2 overall is positive. Rhiann had her chances against the No. 1 seed with several deuce point opportunities. Angelina winning her first collegiate match was good for her, but it was tough to then rebound an hour later to play a solid player in (Jessica) Failla. Failla made it tough physically on Angelina, but she learned a lot and kept a positive attitude." -- Assistant Coach Chris Frusci.

"We are very happy with Karina's performances today. She did a great job of sticking to the game plan and playing solid, high-percentage tennis. We are really proud to see her go win against a girl who has beaten her in the past and is currently ranked No. 32 nationally. She is up for what is ahead." -- Assistant Coach Chris Frusci.

Baylor continues National Collegiate Tennis Classic action on Sunday with singles beginning at 10 a.m. (CT) and doubles at 12 p.m.

To keep up with the team all season long, follow its official account @BaylorWTennis on Instagram and Twitter.

Baylor Man Bears Tennis

The 44th-ranked Tchoutakian opened his day with a 6-2, 6-1 triumph over UCLA’s Austin Rapp and then beat Stanford’s Sumar Kumar, 6-3, 6-4 in the quarterfinals. Meanwhile, Benitez downed UCLA’s Martin Redlicki, 7-5, 6-4, in the round of 16, before besting UCLA’s Logan Staggs, 6-3, 6-2, to get to the semifinals.

Freshman Bjoern Petersen went 1-1 on Saturday as he opened with a 6-4, 6-1 victory over USC’s Laurens Verboven, but then lost in the quarterfinals against to UCLA’s Joseph DiGuilio, 6-3, 6-4.

Three Bears fell in round of 16 action. Will Little was knocked out of the main draw with a 6-1, 2-6, 6-2 loss to Stanford’s Sameer Kumar. Constantin Frantzen lost to Jack Barber of Stanford, 6-3, 6-4. Johannes Schretter did not play his round of 16 match due to illness.

After losses in the round of 16, Little suffered a 6-4, 6-1 setback against UCLA’s Ben Goldberg and Constantin Frantzen lost 6-3, 4-6, 10-4 vs. UCLA’s Austin Rapp.

Besides Baylor’s six players in the main draw, Jimmy Bendeck and Tyler Stayer both fell in the first round of consolation action. Bendeck suffered a 6-4, 6-3 setback to USC’s Jack Jaede and then Stayer dropped a 6-2, 6-1 USC’s Thibault Forget. Bendeck and Stayer went on to fall in their next back draw as well - Bendeck with a 6-2, 6-4 loss against UCLA’s Will Genesen and Stayer with a 6-4, 3-6, 10-4 loss to Reid Shumway of UCLA.

Singles and doubles semifinal action will take place on Sunday.

First at 12 p.m. CT time, Petersen and Frantzen will take on Robbie Bellamy and Jake DeVine, while Benitez and Tchoutakian will battle UCLA’s Ben Goldberg and Logan Staggs. In singles play, Tchoutakian plays UCLA’s Evan Zhu, while Benitez faces UCLA’s Joseph DiGuilio at 12:30 p.m. CT.

For more information on the Baylor men's tennis team all season long, follow the team's official Twitter and Instagram account: @BaylorMTennis.