After a tough 72-61 loss on Thursday against the third-ranked Connecticut Huskies, the Lady Bears wasted little time finding their rhythm, both offensively and defensively, as they defeated the Mississippi Valley State Delta Devils, 101-36 on Sunday at the Ferrell Center.
Senior forward Nina Davis, with her basket in the fourth quarter, became the 6th player in Baylor history to score 2,000 points in her career. She led all scorers with 15 points.
“Nina has been a great ambassador for our program. She’s an All-American. She quietly does her work, plays a role from the time she got here, being what what you want every player to be,” said head coach Kim Mulkey. “That is someone who represents this school, this program, and her own family very well. I hope she’s got a few more points left in her.”
The Lady Bears opened the game on a 15-4 run, behind seven early points from redshirt senior guard Alexis Prince. They would push the lead to 27-10 after one quarter and never looked back. Prince finished with 11 points and 5 rebounds for the Lady Bears.
Baylor made it a priority to be aggressive and feed the post early and often. The result led to consistent trips to the line, as the Lady Bears shot 25 of 40 from the free throw line.
The Lady Bears had a distinct height advantage and were relentless on the glass, holding a stark rebounding advantage, at 59-30, including 25 offensive rebounds. These offensive rebounds help Baylor tally 27 second chance points.
The second half followed along similar lines, as the Lady Bears outscored the Delta Devils 28-5 in the period, as freshman guard Natalie Chou chipped in eight points, including two three point field goals in the period. Chou finished 10 points.
“Coach and everyone has been telling me to shoot more,” Chou said. “They said I need to be more confident and today definitely helped.”
With the Lady Bears building and maintaining a commanding lead for the majority of the game, it allowed Mulkey to play her younger, more inexperienced players. Of the 13 players that Mulkey played, all but one of them scored for the Lady Bears. Baylor found good balance on the offensive as five Lady Bears finished in double figures. To go along with Davis, Prince, and Chou, sophomore post Beatrice Mompremier scored 11 points and 15 rebounds while freshman guard Calveion Landrum scored 10 points, including two three pointers. The Lady Bears finished 8 for 18 from three point range, while the Delta Devils were just 1 for 12 from beyond the arc.
Mississippi Valley State was held to just 24% shooting on the day. The Delta Devils were led by sophomore guard Lauren Elliot, who finished with 11 points.
“For us, we’re a small mid-major institution. Our kids need to play these kinds of games in order to flat out get better,” Mississippi Valley State head coach Jessica Kern said. “We will not see a bigger team. We will not see a stronger team all year long. I think we did some really good things tonight. I’m glad we got through it. We’re going to be better going into our next game.”
The Lady Bears return to action on 7 p.m. Tuesday as they host Southeastern Louisiana at the Ferrell Center.