By Foster Nicholas | Sports Writer
Baylor women’s basketball headed back on the road looking to keep its dominance in true road games intact. However, the Bears were no match for Oklahoma State University as they fell in historic fashion 77-56.
Following a crushing 98-92 loss earlier in the week to No. 16 University of Oklahoma, Baylor traveled into Stillwater, Okla., to face the Cowgirls for a chance at redemption.
Even with Collen trying to give the team the preparation and energy they needed heading into the contest, the Bears (16-8, 7-5 Big 12) fell 77-56 recording only the team’s second road loss of the season.
“I saw a team that still had a hangover from losing a five-point lead with eighteen seconds to go against OU,” Collen said. “That’s what I saw. I saw a team didn’t really execute at either end of the floor.”
Not only did the Bears lose, but the green and gold did not hold a lead at any point in the game. The 21-point loss was the largest for Baylor in Big 12 play since losing by 24 at Iowa State in the 2009-10 season. With the loss, the Bears were swept by the Cowgirls (18-7, 8-5 Big 12) in the season series, and the last time that happened was in the 2007-2008 season.
“They kicked our butt … they beat us like a drum,” Collen said. “They were fantastic.”
Despite the loss, two Bears were able to record double-doubles, as fifth-year senior forward Caitlin Bickle led the team in both points with 16 and and a career-high 13 rebounds. Freshman forward Bella Fontleroy recorded her second double-double of the season with 11 points and 10 rebounds, and junior guard Sarah Andrews was the only other Baylor scorer in double digits with 11.
All nine active players on the roster saw the floor and for freshman forward Kyla Abraham, it was the first appearance in Big 12 play. She only played four minutes but managed to make an impact by scoring four points and getting two blocks on defense.
The Bears didn’t start fast, which was the opposite of the Cowgirls. By the end of a sloppy first quarter, Baylor was down 22-9 and had only shot 3-10 from the floor and had eight turnovers in just the first ten minutes of play. Baylor had several missed layups and turnovers in transition that led to opportunities for OSU.
Moving into the second quarter, the green and gold found enough scoring prowess to put up 18 points, but the defensive effort and consistency on the other end of the court was only good enough to allow four more points than the Bears. The halftime score saw the Bears down by 17 points, 44-27. In the first half Baylor only shot 40% from the floor and its usually consistent 3-point scoring was sitting at just 2-8.
As Collen and the Bears looked to try and claw back into the game in the third quarter, it became apparent that Baylor was not on its A-game and again lost the quarter. The Bears came out of the half hot and managed to cut the deficit down to 12, but the Bears had lost all momentum by the end of the quarter. The team shot below 30% and were only 4-14 from the floor in the third, putting up 11 points that were no match for OSU’s 17. Again, turnovers reigned supreme and the team even air-balled multiple layups.
“I thought when we made that run in the third quarter we had a little energy and got after it to start the third. But then just uncharacteristic turnovers in transition, missed layups in transition, that turned into a bit of a momentum swing,” Collen said.
However, the fourth quarter was by far the best for Baylor as the team didn’t give up and managed to score 18 points and stay tough defensively in garbage time. By the end of the game the Bears had 19 turnovers, only three less than their 22 made shots on the day.
The Bears will look to bounce back and get back in the win column against Kansas State University for a 6:30 p.m. tip-off on Wednesday in the Bramlage Coliseum in Manhattan, Kan.