By Foster Nicholas | Sports Writer
In its first road challenge of the year, No. 13 Baylor women’s basketball was unfazed by an unfamiliar venue as sophomore forward Darianna Littlepage-Buggs’ 24-point, 11-rebound double-double pushed the team past SMU 85-61 at the Moody Coliseum in Dallas on Thursday night.
Head coach Nicki Collen saw nine different players tally a field goal, with three in double figures. The Bears (6-0) put up more than 80 points for the sixth consecutive time to start the season.
Buggs led the way for Baylor with 24 points on 11-of-15 shooting to go along with her 11 rebounds. Graduate forward Dre’Una Edwards was also a force with a double-double of her own, going 5-9 from the floor and scoring 10 points as well as 11 rebounds. Sophomore forward Bella Fontleroy was the only other Bear in double figures with 17 points, making seven of her 11 shots off the bench.
Halfway through the first quarter, the Bears stared down their largest deficit of the season, only trailing 10-6. However, after consistent defense and back-to-back threes from senior guard Sarah Andrews with three minutes in the first quarter, the green and gold had established a four-point lead of their own, pulling ahead 18-14.
The Bears never trailed the Mustangs (3-4) after their early run, and the first half ended with the visitors leading 42-32. Collen’s team shot 41% from the floor in the first half and only knocked down three of their 14 shots from beyond the arc.
Baylor came out hot in the second half and doubled up its three-point numbers, going 6-11 for deep in the second half. It also improved its overall shot, shooting 51.5% from the floor in the final two quarters. The team out-rebounded SMU 51-28 on the day and came away with 17 second-chance points. In addition, Baylor assisted on 27 of its 33 made baskets and came away with the 85-61 win.
The Bears will be back in action on Sunday for a matinee matchup with Oregon. Tipoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. at the Ferrell Center.