By Parmida Schahhosseini
The No. 1 Baylor Lady Bears (21-1, 11-0 Big 12) put on a show as they routed the Kansas Jayhawks 86–45 on Wednesday night.
Senior center Brittney Griner finished with another double-double, recording 26 points, 13 rebounds, three blocks and two steals. Junior guard Odyssey Sims had 13 points and nine assists.
“Yes, I tried to get Odyssey a double-double, but after two minutes, that’s enough. They told me she had nine assists.” head coach Kim Mulkey said. “We tried.”
Baylor started off strong from the opening tipoff.
Griner quickly got the ball to Sims, who passed it to senior guard Jordan Madden for the game’s first score. Kansas’ Angel Goodrich responded with a 2-point jumper.
Griner responded with a layup and Kansas’s Chelsea Gardner answered with a bucket from beyond the arc.
For the next five and a half minutes, Baylor left Kansas scoreless and went on a 14-0 run.
A two-point jumper by Gardner ended the run, but senior forward Brooklyn Pope quickly responded and Baylor’s offense was still in rhythm. Kansas slowly tried to start a run of its own, but it was only a 5-0 run before Griner made a layup and got fouled.
Senior guard Kimetria Hayden drove into the paint for a 2-point jumper shortly after as Baylor went on an 8-0 run.
Kansas responded with a 3-point shot, but Baylor wouldn’t allow them to go on another run. Griner closed with half with a 2-point jumper to give the Lady Bears 45-24 lead.
Kansas started the second half with a turnover as they were called for a travel.
This was mainly due to the defensive pressure put on by Baylor. Baylor started the second half with power and pressure.
Pope was the first to score with a jumper.
Madden later scored as she ran up the middle for a layup after getting the ball from Sims.
Pope played with physical toughness, making her way into the paint as she scored and got fouled. Madden swooped in and made an acrobatic move to get in her second shot of the second half.
It was a team effort as the Lady Bears found their rhythm and kept their turnovers to a minimum.
Kansas struggled to respond as it backed away from the paint despite its size.
“They’d drive in and kick it, but when they saw me come in they backed out,” Griner said.
Baylor went on a 31-11 run to extend the lead even more. Baylor’s defense was stout in the second half as they only allowed Kansas to score nine points in the first 12 minutes of the second half. Baylor put even extra pressure as they were making their fast breaks and quick transitions.
The Lady Bears also forced a few shot clock violations with their defensive pressure.
Baylor’s guards had a big night as they left Goodrich to 1-9 shooting for two points and six turnovers.
They also only allowed six points from Jayhawk Carolyn Davis.
“Odyssey is one of the best perimeter ball defender in the country,” Kansas head coach Bonnie Henrickson said.
The Lady Bears will next travel south to take on the Texas Longhorns at 7 p.m. Saturday in Austin. This will be the first meeting between these two teams this year.
The Longhorns are 2-8 in Big 12 conference play and 9-12 overall. Texas currently sits in ninth place in conference play.
The Longhorns have lost 10 of its last 12 games.