No. 4 Baylor tops Texas Tech 69-43 for another 20-win season
WACO, Texas (AP) Baylor coach Kim Mulkey wasn't sure if a ragged win over Texas Tech had something to do with the fourth-ranked Lady Bears coming off big road wins against Texas and Iowa State.
Mulkey just knows her team needs the intensity to return before Saturday's visit to No. 24 West Virginia.
''We've got to get back to where we were,'' Mulkey said after Nina Davis scored 12 of her 18 points in the third quarter of a turnover-plagued 69-43 victory against the Lady Raiders on Wednesday night. ''Tonight was not a very pretty sight.''
The Lady Bears (20-1, 7-1 Big 12) extended their Big 12 record by securing a 16th straight 20-win season - covering all 16 years Mulkey has been the coach. They overcame 21 turnovers by holding Texas Tech to 25 percent shooting, including 1 of 13 from 3-point range.
The Lady Bears stayed a half-game behind No. 6 Texas atop the Big 12 after the Longhorns beat Kansas 70-46.
''It wasn't anything that they were doing on defense,'' Davis said. ''It's not like they were playing the passing lanes and just putting a lot of pressure. It just all comes down to focus and that's something we can't do when we're playing a good team.''
Davis had 12 rebounds for her second double-double of the season as Baylor beat the Lady Raiders (10-10, 1-8) for the 10th consecutive time in a series Texas Tech still leads 47-35.
After scoring six of the first eight Baylor points in the third quarter, Davis scored the final six of the period.
The Lady Raiders shot 14 percent in the first quarter and were outscored 10-2 over the final 5 minutes of the second. Japreece Dean led Texas Tech with 17 points, but on just 5-of-19 shooting.
''We haven't shot the ball well in a while,'' Texas Tech coach Candi Whitaker said. ''It's hard to win when you don't make open shots.''
Niya Johnson had 10 points and eight of Baylor's 23 assists on 26 baskets. Alexis Jones had 12 points and five assists.
Alexis Prince led Baylor in the first half with eight points, including a 3-pointer in the final seconds for a 33-19 halftime lead. She started the half-closing 10-2 run with a jumper.
''I thought Alexis Prince was a spark for us off the bench,'' Mulkey said. ''I thought she got some big rebounds for us. I thought she hit some big shots.''
The shorter Lady Raiders tried to challenge inside without much success as Baylor finished with nine blocks, including a career high-tying three from freshman Beatrice Mompremier.
The Lady Bears challenged well on the perimeter, too, with Texas Tech guards Dean and Ivonne CookTaylor going 8 of 33 combined.
Jones and Johnson were presented commemorative basketballs by Mulkey before the game for recent career milestones.
Jones, a Duke transfer in her first season with the Lady Bears, surpassed the 1,000-point mark at Iowa State last weekend. The junior guard had 708 points at Duke and now has 312 at Baylor.
Johnson became the Big 12 assists leader with her only assist at No. 6 Texas on Jan. 17. She topped the previous record of 844 set by Texas Tech's Erin Grant from 2003-06 and now has 860.
Texas Tech: The last win over Baylor was an upset of the No. 1 Lady Bears, 56-45 on Feb. 19, 2011, in Lubbock. The Lady Raiders haven't won in Waco since Feb. 8, 2004. ... Texas Tech dropped to 0-6 in true road games. ... Leashja Grant was 2 of 2 from the field in the first quarter. The rest of the team was 0 of 12. Grant finished 4 of 6 and scored 11 points.
Baylor: The Lady Bears now have 22 seasons with at least 20 wins. All of the Big 12 seasons are under Mulkey. ... Davis' double-double was the 25th of her career. ... Baylor has won 161 consecutive home games against unranked teams. The last loss was April 4, 2003, against Auburn in the WNIT finals.
Texas Tech: Home against Kansas on Saturday.
Baylor: At No. 24 West Virginia on Saturday.