Third Quarter Surge Pushes No. 6 Baylor Past Jayhawks, 58-40
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Despite holding the Lady Bears to their second-lowest scoring performance of the season, Kansas women’s basketball fell to No. 6 Baylor, 58-40, after a third quarter offensive surge on Wednesday evening inside Allen Fieldhouse.
Kansas emerged from the locker room after halftime trailing Baylor by only eight points. The Lady Bears’ 30 points tied the second-lowest first half total this season, despite shooting 52 percent from the field. BU turned things up in the second half, however, connecting on its first eight field goal attempts to push the lead to 20 points and out of reach for the Jayhawks.
The Lady Bears (15-1, 2-1 Big 12) were led by the Big 12’s second-leading scorer, junior forward Nina Davis. A game-high 16 points from Davis continued her streak of double-figure scoring in every game this season, but also marked her lowest scoring performance in the last six games. Senior guard Niya Johnson and redshirt junior Alexis Jones each logged 12 points, with Johnson dishing out a game-high eight assists and Jones draining Baylor’s two long-range buckets of the night.
Sophomore guard Chayla Cheadle brought the energy all night for the Jayhawks (5-9, 0-3 Big 12), leading the team in both points (12) and rebounds (6). The Columbia, Missouri native shot 2-of-7 from the field and 7-of-8 from the charity stripe, while also grabbing three of Kansas’ four offensive rebounds. Junior forward Caelynn Manning-Allen tallied nine points and three rebounds. The only Jayhawk to shoot 50 percent or better was freshman guard Kylee Kopatich, connecting on 3-of-6 attempts.
Junior forward Caelynn Manning-Allen logged nine points and three rebounds
It took two and a half minutes for either team to score, before Davis rattled in a jumper to get the Lady Bears on the board first. By the first media timeout at the 4:53 mark, the Jayhawks forced four Baylor turnovers and trailed by a single point. Out of the break, four-straight made field goals helped the Bears take off on an 11-2 run to push their lead to 17-4. Kansas answered by claiming the last five points of the first quarter to bring the score to 17-9 after the first ten minutes of play.
Freshman guard Aisia Robertson gave the Jayhawks a spark on the first play of the second quarter with a steal and a fast-break layup. Baylor then collected six of the game’s next seven points, stretching its lead to 11 points. A five-point scoring streak midway through the period brought Kansas back to within six, 23-17. The conference foes remained evenly matched over the final minutes of the half, with a pair of free throws from Cheadle cutting the Baylor lead, 30-22, concluding the second quarter’s scoring.
The Lady Bears entered the game averaging more than 45 points in the paint per game, but Kansas managed to hold the visitors to just 14 points inside in the first half. Each team played tight defense over the first 20 minutes of action, forcing the other to commit 11 turnovers. The Jayhawks tallied six steals to Baylor’s four.
The second half opened with a 14-2 run by Baylor to extend its lead to 44-24 by the 4:33 mark of the third quarter. The two squads traded baskets through the remainder of the period, putting up six points each. Jones hit Baylor’s first three-point attempt of the second half as time expired, giving the visitors a 50-30 advantage. BU shot 75 percent from the field in the third quarter, sinking 9-of-12 attempts from the field to outscore Kansas by 12 points. The Jayhawks’ eight points was the lowest third quarter total this season.
Kansas continued to fight in the final 10 minutes of action, and significantly slowed down the Baylor offense. The Lady Bears shot 3-of-14 from the field as the Jayhawks outscored the conference favorites 10-8. It marked just the third time this season that Baylor was held to single-digit scoring in a quarter. Manning-Allen’s layup with less than 30 seconds left in the contest brought the score to 58-40, where the score would hold to give the Lady Bears their second conference victory.
KANSAS 40 // NO. 6 BAYLOR 58
JAN. 6, 2016 – LAWRENCE, Kan.
•Baylor claimed an all-time series lead, 24-8.
•With the loss, Kansas now owns a 5-9 mark against the Lady Bears in Allen Fieldhouse.
•Kansas’ record against Big 12 Conference foes is 119-196.
•Kansas’ record is 410-171 in Allen Fieldhouse. The Jayhawks are 4-6 at home in 2015-16.
•Kansas fell to 0-2 against ranked opponents in 2015-16.
•The Jayhawks held Baylor to its second-lowest scoring output of the season after the Lady Bears registered 58 points. BU posted 45 points in its lone loss in 2015-16.
•It was also just the third time in 2015-16 Baylor had been held to a single-digit quarter after an eight-point fourth quarter.
•Kansas swiped a season-high 10 possessions away from Baylor.
•The Jayhawks also forced the Lady Bears into their third-most turnovers of the season with 20 giveaways.
•KU’s 2-of-12 effort (16.7 percent) from the three-point line was the lowest percentage the Jayhawks have recorded this season.
•Baylor held Kansas to just 21 rebounds, KU’s fewest total on the glass this season.
•The Jayhawks also connected on a season-low 13 field goals, their lowest since making 11 field goals against Duke on Nov. 30, 2013.
•KU was limited to just 10 points in the paint, its lowest this season.
•The third quarter saw Kansas score a third quarter season-low eight points.
•For the second time in 2015-16, sophomore G Chayla Cheadle’s 12 points led the Jayhawks in the scoring column.
•It was also the second time this season Cheadle scored in double figures, the last a 17-point effort at SMU.
•Cheadle’s six rebounds were a team-high.
•Cheadle also made a season-high seven free throws, tying the most by a Jayhawk in a game this season. Prior to the contest, Cheadle had only made seven free throws on the season.
•For the second time this season the Jayhawks’ leading scorer, sophomore G Lauren Aldridge – 12.2 points-per-game – was held scoreless on seven field goal attempts.
Kansas Head Coach Brandon Schneider
“I thought we played pretty well in two of the quarters. I think when you look at the stats, some bright spots were holding them to 58 points, and they average over 80. We only gave up 12 offensive rebounds, and they average close to 17. We also caused 20 turnovers. So there were some many battles in which I thought we competed hard in. I think this young team took a lot of positive steps forwards in a lot of areas tonight. It’s a struggle for us to score anyway, but especially with a team with that size and athleticism. It was just really hard to get things in the paint against them, so you really have to make your open threes and your open 15-17 footers and I thought we got some really clean looks from those spots, but unfortunately, we didn’t knock them down. If we made our free throws in the first half, it’s probably a four or five point game”
On team strategy:
“We really wanted to play deep in the clock, shrink the game a little bit and not give them so many possessions because there phenomenal in transition. I felt like I could also to give them an opportunity to make a mistake and we did a much better job with that in the first half than we did in the third quarter. Then we kind of got it under control in the fourth quarter. If you let them get in transition, you can get run out real fast. “
On if the team was taking shots too quickly in the third quarter:
“A little bit, but at the same time you have to be aggressive. Our big thing tonight is don’t be timid on anything we do and don’t second guess yourself. You still have to be aggressive even though it’s a game that you’re the team that’s not supposed to win, doesn’t mean you have to back down or be timid.”
On Lauren Aldridge’s off night stemming from good defense or missed shots:
“I just think that she missed some shots. She got some pretty clean looks. She picked up two fouls in the first quarter and that took her out of the game. Baylor didn’t face guard or deny her very hard. She just didn’t make many shots and that is part of basketball.”
On if Baylor adjusted at half because of the close score:
“I knew that offensive rebounding was going to be a big emphasis for them at halftime because I know coach Mulkey and the things that they preach. I think we held them to three offensive rebounds in the first half, but we turned the ball over too much in the third quarter. When that happens, you can’t get back because the other team doesn’t expect you to turn the ball over.”
Kansas sophomore guard Chayla Cheadle
On the good first half performance and keeping the score close going into half:
“We went into the game with a lot of energy. We got ahead of ourselves a little bit as we went into the lockerroom. We needed to focus more and when we began the second half, the lead slipped a little and it didn’t go as we planned.”
On if this game was a confidence booster for her:
“It definitely was, but I feel like my confidence has been lifted since the beginning of conference play.”
On how it felt to be back in the starting lineup:
“I’ve been in-and-out of the starting lineup all season. I just do whatever I can to provide for my team.”
Kansas freshman guard Aisia Robertson
On if this game provided some benefits and some positive steps heading forward:
“I definitely think we took steps forward as a team. We use every day as a learning step for us and I feel like we took everything we’ve learned in practice and in the gaming plan and we executed it in the first half, more than in the second half, and used this as a big step forward for us.”
Baylor Head Coach Kim Mulkey
On tonight’s performance:
“When you are limited by injuries, playing kids that aren’t 100 percent, have freshmen you’re trying to depend on who don’t have a clue about how to prepare for a game, it frustrates you as a coach, so I don’t think, we’re by no means a polished product out there.”
On playing in Allen Fieldhouse:
“Any game on the road in the Big 12 is tough. Playing here is not any different than any other Big 12 school. You just try to get in and get out with a victory and protect your home court and that’s what we’re try to do.”
On defending Lauren Aldridge:
“I’d like to tell you it was our defense, but I’ll wait until I see the film. I think she got some good looks, she just missed them. I will look at the film and be able to answer that better, but she is a leader for Kansas and I know every time we’ve played against her she’s hit some big shots for them.”
On Nina Davis and Niya Johnson:
“The most important thing is that they’re experienced, they don’t get rattled and they try to give you everything they have even when they’re not 100 percent. Not one of their better games. Your confidence in players comes through practice and having them in the system for a while. We won but I can’t go through this league and only play six players. I can’t get frustrated at kids, who have to respond and play at this level.”
On Coach Brandon Schneider:
“I like him. I think he comes from a long line of basketball. His father was a legendary coach out in West Texas so he knows the game. Probably grew up around it. Probably was in every gym his dad ever coached in. I think when you have a change in coaches, it takes time. You have to recruit your own players into your own system and if they play hard for you, that’s all you can ask them to do. I’ve been in that situation. I got Baylor 16 years ago and inherited a seven-win team, so I think we just have to be patient with him and let him do what he’s got to do to win.”
On Alexis Jones:
“She’s not fluid but she will hit a big shot for you. She had many ridiculous turnovers tonight, but again when you’re limited in substitutions and not resting players, you have to live with it. She shot the ball well, she was 5-of-7 from the field, and she got us some rebounds but the unforced turnovers, we have to stop that in the open floor.”
Baylor senior guard Niya Johnson
On a strong second-half start:
“We went into the lockerroom and Coach Mulkey said they can keep up with us and they can beat us. We just wanted to jump out there with some intensity and just try to get them on their heels and go out there in full force.”
On what needs to be improved:
“Our turnovers is something that we have to focus on. We just have to relax and get post production as well.”
On being a senior leader:
“It’s something I look forward to; just making everyone around me better. I’ve been through that when I was a freshman, so I was just trying to lead and keep them encouraged. It’s going to be a long road but we’re in here together. Just like Coach Mulkey says, make her believe in you and give her that confidence so that’s what I try to do. Just say okay and try to keep their heads up.”
Baylor junior forward Nina Davis
On her improvement this season:
“I can say, now as the games go on, I’m getting more comfortable and I’m having more time where I’m able to play the 3 and get used to it. I go back and forth from playing the 4 and then going to the 3. On offense, there really isn’t much of a difference because I’m not a back-to-the-basket type of post player but on defense I just have to guard the bigger players and chase guards. Whatever my team needs I’m ready to do.”
The Jayhawks hit the road for a match-up with the Iowa State Cyclones on Saturday, Jan. 9, in Ames, Iowa. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. and fans can follow the action on the Jayhawk Radio Network.
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