Kansas Win Snaps No. 7 Baylor’s 53-Game Conference Win Streak
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Junior forward Chelsea Gardner scored a team-high 28 points and grabbed a game-high 13 rebounds for her fifth double-double of the season while playing 38 minutes to help the Jayhawks end the No. 7 Baylor Lady Bears’ 53-game Big 12 Conference win streak 76-60 Sunday afternoon in front of over 3500 fans inside historic Allen Fieldhouse.
Gardner filled up the stat sheet for Kansas (9-9, 2-4), but it took a complete team effort from the Jayhawks to snap an eight-game losing streak to the Lady Bears while also giving Baylor (14-3, 4-1) its first conference defeat since a Feb. 19, 2011 loss to Texas Tech.
The win also became Kansas’ first victory over a top-10 opponent since the Jayhawks took down No. 7/8 Delaware in the NCAA Tournament on March 20, 2012. The last time KU defeated a foe ranked in the top-10 during the regular season was when the Jayhawks took down No. 4/5 Baylor on March 4, 2009 in Lawrence.
KU never relied on just one player to control the game, contributions came from everywhere. Two other Jayhawks besides Gardner scored in double figures. Junior guard Natalie Knight came up with 18 points and senior guard CeCe Harper contributed eight big second half points to run her total to 10 for the game. Junior guard Asia Boyd snatched 10 rebounds and hit a couple of crucial second half shots to help KU pull away late in game.
Baylor was led by the nation’s leading scorer and senior guard Odyssey Sims who scored a game-high 31 points and corralled a career-high 12 rebounds. Sims found herself struggling from the field on the day as she was constantly being hounded by multiple Jayhawk defenders and nearly every shot she took was contested. Even though most of the Jayhawks’ defensive focus was on Sims no other Lady Bear managed to score in double figures.
Both teams struggled to put points on the board in the first half until a floater by Sims sparked a 13-4 Lady Bear run, many of those points came from offensive rebounds and second-chance opportunities as Baylor led 15-4 with 13:28 left in the half. After a timeout, the Kansas defense made adjustments to box-out and get defensive rebounds while still trying to slow down the potent offensive attack. KU manufactured an 8-0 run of its own, led by Gardner, forcing Baylor into a timeout clinging to a two point lead, 15-13 with 10:06 remaining in the half. The Lady Bears responded by adding four more points to lead, 19-13, with both baskets coming by way of offensive rebounds.
Sims found herself open in the corner and nailed a three to push the Lady Bear lead to eight, 30-22, near the end of the first half. Baylor looked poised to make a run and put the Jayhawks away, but Knight answered with a three of her own which ended up kicking off a 9-0 Jayhawk run to give Kansas its first lead of the game 31-30 with 21 seconds left in the first half. Baylor took a 32-31 lead into halftime, marking only the second time the Lady Bears have scored 32 or fewer points in a half.
The Jayhawk defense came out and played with a purpose to start the second half against the seventh ranked team in the country. Baylor went cold from the field and Sims was swarmed and forced to take long jump shots nearly every time she touched the ball. The energy and anticipation started to build in the crowd after KU took its second lead of the game, 38-37 by way of a run-out layup from Knight after a missed Lady Bear shot.
The game became a back-and-forth affair between the two teams. There were only three lead changes in the first half, but eight minutes into the second half there had already been four lead changes. With KU trailing by one, 47-46, the Jayhawks peeled-off a 7-0 run in large part to five straight points from junior guard Asia Boyd to force a Baylor timeout while igniting the Fieldhouse crowd as KU led by six, 53-47, with 10 minutes left to play. The Kansas lead would grow to as many as eight points, 60-52, after the Bears were assessed with a technical foul. Kansas looked much different on the glass in the second half, tightening-up and outrebounding the conference’s leading rebounding team 51-47 for the game.
The Jayhawks found success with fast break opportunities connecting on six second half fast break points. The fast pace continued to play into KU’s favor as junior guard Lamaria Cole stole the ball away at half court and found Harper who leaked out for an and-one layup that put the finishing touches on the game and gave KU its first double-digit lead of the day, 70-58, with 3:09 remaining in the game. The Lady Bears had no answer down the stretch for the Jayhawk attack, KU eventually pushed its lead out to 16 points, 76-60, and defeated Baylor for the eighth time in school history.
The Jayhawks will stay home and return to the court on Wednesday, Jan. 22, where they will take on No. 11/13 Oklahoma State at 7 p.m..
KANSAS STARTERS (SEASON/CAREER): Fr. Jada Brown (4/4), Sr. CeCe Harper (13/34), Fr. Keyla Morgan (8/8), Jr. Chelsea Gardner (17/46) and Jr. Natalie Knight (18/71)
• Gives the Jayhawks their first win of the season against a team ranked in the top 25 and makes head coach Bonnie Henrickson 13-59 when playing a ranked opponent at KU.
• Gives Kansas its first win of the season against a team ranked in the top 10 and makes Henrickson 3-25 against top-10 teams while at Kansas. The last time the Jayhawks defeated a team ranked in the top 10 was March 20, 2012, when they defeated No. 7/8 Delaware in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. The last time the Jayhawks defeated a top-10 team in the regular season was also against Baylor, when they defeated the No. 5/6 Lady Bears in Allen Fieldhouse on March 4, 2009.
• Snaps Baylor’s league-record 53-game Big 12 Conference winning streak, which was the longest active streak in the nation. The last time the Lady Bears lost a game in the Big 12 was on Feb. 19, 2011, to Texas Tech.
• Improves Kansas’ all-time record to 766-542.
• Improves the Jayhawks’ all-time conference record to 233-240.
• Improves KU’s all-time Big 12 record to 110-172 and 53-101 in conference play under Henrickson.
• Improves the Jayhawks all-time series record against Baylor to 20-8 and snaps an eight-game winning streak for the Lady Bears over Kansas.
• Makes Kansas 399-153 all-time in Allen Fieldhouse and 120-53 at home under Henrickson.
• Improves Henrickson’s record to 167-144 at KU and 325-206 overall.
• Improves KU to 25-52 under Henrickson during the month of January.
• Improves the Jayhawks’ record to 5-3 during the 2013-14 season when playing on Sunday and 51-25 when playing on the first day of the week under Henrickson.
• Down 15-4 with 13:28 left in the first half, the Jayhawks knocked in eight-straight points to cut the Baylor lead to three, 15-12, with 10:08 remaining in the half.
• After the Lady Bears’ lead reached double-digits again, 25-14, the Jayhawks went on a 6-0 run to reduce the Baylor lead to single-digits, 25-20, with 3:53 left in the first half.
• After a Baylor three-pointer brought the Lady Bears’ lead to eight, 30-22, the Jayhawks fought back once again with nine-straight points to take their first lead of the game, 31-30, with 21 seconds left in the first half.
• The Kansas defense held the Lady Bears to just 32 points in the first half. That is the second time this season that the Jayhawks have held Baylor to 32 first-half points. BU has only scored less than 32 points in a half twice this season, with both times coming in its last game against UConn, where they scored 27 points in the first half and 28 points in the second half.
• Trailing by one, 47-46, with 11:21 left in the game, the Jayhawks went on a 7-0 run, including five-straight points from Asia Boyd, to put the Jayhawks in front, 53-47, with 9:47 left in the game.
• Leading by seven, 65-58, with 4:42 remaining in the game, the Jayhawks scored nine-straight points to take their first double-digit lead of the game, 74-58, with 2:33 remaining.
• Baylor shot just 30 percent for the game. That makes back-to-back games that the Lady Bears have been held to 30 percent from the field, both resulted in losses.
• The Jayhawks scored 76 points in their win against Baylor. The Jayhawks have reached at least 70 points in eight of their nine wins this season and are 110-13, when they score at least 70 points under Henrickson.
• Kansas out-rebounded Big 12 rebounding leader Baylor, 51-47. Marking the 12th time this season the Jayhawks have out-rebounded their opponent.
• Freshman Dakota Gonzalez dished out a career-high three assists, eclipsing her previous high of two against SIU-Edwardsville (11/13/13).
• Junior Chelsea Gardner knocked in three points the old-fashioned way, with 5:27 left in the first half. The DeSoto, Texas, native finished the game with a team-high 28 points and added 13 rebounds for her fifth double-double of the season and 11th of her career. Gardner recorded her team-high 28 points on a career-high 12 field goals made and 21 field goal attempts, besting her previous highs of 11 and 15 against Grambling State (11/28/13) and Central Michigan, respectively. Defensively, the forward blocked three shots to give her 95 for her career and move her into ninth all-time on the Kansas blocks list.
• Senior CeCe Harper knocked in a three-point play with 3:59 left in the game. The San Antonio, Texas, native finished the game with 10 points, three assists and two rebounds.
KUAthletics.com: The official online source for Kansas Athletics, Williams Education Fund contributions, tickets, merchandise, multimedia, photos and much, much more.