After trailing since the 12-minute mark of the first half, Baylor finally tied the game at 40 with 12:36 remaining. A layup by Isaiah Taylor (12 points, 9 assists) just over a minute later would put Texas up for good. The Bears kept the game close thanks to 11 second half points from the free throw line, but they were never able to get over the hump.
Longhorn big men Prince Ibeh and Connor Lammert came up huge for Shaka Smart in this game. Ibeh's 9 points belie his impact inside on both ends of the floor. His presence in the paint on defense forced both Baylor's guards and big men to alter their shots near the rim, and on offense he drew enough fouls to help disqualify both Johnathan Motley and Rico Gathers by game's end. Ibeh's dominating presence inside, along with Lammert's 15 point night (3-5 3PA), was too much for Baylor on either end.
Baylor's forwards had good games themselves. Taurean Prince finished the game with 18 points (4-7 3PA) and 7 rebounds, while Gathers poured in 20 (6-6 FTA) with 8 rebounds. Prince was a maniac tonight, in a good way. He was flying around the court on defense and taking advantage of his size when defended by a smaller Texas player. Had Baylor funneled a few more post touches to Prince instead of whoever Ibeh was guarding, the game might have unfolded differently.
The real shortcoming from Baylor was in perimeter shooting. Excluding Prince, Baylor went 1-10 from deep. Both Al Freeman and King McClure missed their 3 attempts and combined to score a meager 2 points. Those two are Baylor's best perimeter threats. If they miss their shots, it's hard for Baylor to score.
For his part, Lester Medford handed out 8 assists with 10 points. Baylor's guards had a difficult time running offense all game. Texas' perimeter pressure both in full and half court disrupted a lot of what Baylor wanted to do, even though it only generated 11 turnovers. The freshman trio of Tevin Mack, Kerwin Roach Jr., and Eric Davis Jr. deserve a lot of credit for playing good defense and staying up on Medford and Freeman all game.
After an impressive game against Texas Tech, Terry Maston has had a smaller impact than Baylor fans had hoped for. In his last five games he is averaging just 3.8 points and 3 FGAs per game. With poor showings from him and Motley, Texas' bench (20 points) soundly outperformed Baylor's (7 points).
Texas was 5-10 from deep in the first half and were above their average rates in both assists (12) and offensive rebounds (5) before halftime. While Baylor was able to hold the Longhorns to just 1 offensive rebound in the 2nd half, Texas assisted all 9 of their second half makes. Each of UT's 21 makes came on an assist, a demonstration of quick, clean execution and decisiveness.
Texas is proving to be a growing threat in the Big XII this season. Tonight's game is no death knell for Baylor's season, and the Bears will have plenty of opportunities to steal a road game or two with half of their conference games left in front of them.
Baylor falls to 6-3 in Big XII play and has now lost their last two conference home games. The Bears will have to upset WVU in Morgantown on Saturday to avoid their first back-to-back losses of the season.
|Prince Ibeh, C||4-5||0-0||1-2||2||4||6||0||0||5||3||2||9|
|Connor Lammert, F||5-7||3-4||2-2||1||4||5||3||1||0||1||2||15|
|Javan Felix, G||3-5||1-2||2-3||0||1||1||5||0||0||0||1||9|
|Isaiah Taylor, G||3-8||1-4||5-6||0||2||2||9||3||0||2||4||12|
|Kendal Yancy, G||0-3||0-1||2-2||1||3||4||1||0||0||1||2||2|
|Shaquille Cleare, F||2-2||0-0||1-1||1||2||3||1||0||0||1||2||5|
|Demarcus Holland, G||1-4||0-1||1-2||0||2||2||0||2||0||1||2||3|
|Tevin Mack, G||0-2||0-2||2-2||0||1||1||0||0||1||0||0||2|
|Eric Davis Jr., G||1-4||1-1||0-1||0||4||4||0||0||0||1||1||3|
|Kerwin Roach Jr., G||2-4||2-2||1-2||0||0||0||2||0||0||0||4||7|
|Rico Gathers, F||7-10||0-0||6-6||4||4||8||0||3||0||0||5||20|
|Taurean Prince, F||5-13||4-7||4-6||4||3||7||1||2||1||4||2||18|
|Al Freeman, G||1-6||0-3||0-1||1||3||4||2||0||0||3||4||2|
|Ishmail Wainright, G||1-4||0-1||0-0||2||5||7||2||1||0||1||4||2|
|Lester Medford, G||3-8||1-3||3-3||0||2||2||8||1||0||2||2||10|
|Terry Maston, F||0-2||0-0||2-2||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||2|
|Johnathan Motley, F||2-5||0-0||1-4||0||2||2||0||0||1||1||5||5|
|Jake Lindsey, G||0-1||0-0||0-0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|King McClure, G||0-5||0-3||0-0||2||0||2||0||0||0||0||2||0|