By Greg DeVries
No. 9 Baylor men’s basketball snapped its two-game losing streak as it beat the Iowa State Cyclones 79-64 on Monday at the Ferrell Center. Sophomore Perry Jones III led all scorers with 18 points and seven rebounds.
The Bears returned to the win column after they fell 72-57 at No. 3 Missouri on Saturday.
The shots were falling for the Bears tonight, a main key toward their victory. Baylor shot 60 percent in the game including 21 of 29 in the second half. A big part of this was shot selection. The Bears shot 15 of 16 in the paint in the second half alone.
“Shooting 72 percent in the second half, that was outstanding,” head coach Scott Drew said. “When you make shots, it makes everything go better.”
Jones III opened the game with four quick points. These points, two of which came from the free-throw line, were important for him to shake off his recent slump.
“As long as he’s aggressive like that, that’s a good thing. Today he was aggressive. And really, his teammates deserve a lot of credit,” Drew said. “In the last two games, we did have some shots that we missed. Today we made them. That’s coaching for you.”
Jones III credited those around him for his performance.
“The coaching staff and my teammates kept me confident,” Jones III said.
Baylor recorded 24 assists compared to just eight turnovers.
Freshman Quincy Miller finished with 16 points and six assists. This marked his 14th game in double-figure scoring this season.
“At first it was kind of a struggle, but this is how we’re supposed to play,” Miller said about team chemistry.
The Bears forced Cyclone sophomore Royce White to turn the ball over seven times. White is often the man that creates plays for the Cyclones, so forcing him to make mistakes helped even out his 14 points and five rebounds.
“So many defenses key on him. We just tried to make things difficult tonight,” Drew said. “I thought we did a good job with that and that’s why he had so many turnovers. But he’s one of the best players in the country. A lot of people don’t know about him.”
Senior Anthony Jones came off of the bench and finished with 12 points and five rebounds on five of seven shooting in 25 minutes.
“He had great energy. He played very well at Missouri too. [Jones] rebounded well, shot well. Again, this is when you need your leaders to step up,” Drew said.
Jones said he felt he needed to step up as a senior for the team.
“Me, being a senior, I tried to be out there and be their leader,” Jones said.
Jones, along with fellow seniors Quincy Acy and Fred Ellis, helped the Bears win their 92nd game on their watch. This makes them the most successful senior class in program history.
Baylor’s next game is against Kansas State at 12:45 p.m. Saturday at the Ferrell Center.