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Baylor Baseball

The Good, The Bad & The Ugly from Baylor's Week of Sports

March 20, 2023
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The sun is starting to set on basketball season, but for now, the women are still standing tall as a new week begins. Elsewhere, baseball makes a big splash in their conference debut, softball rolls along, and some blasts from the Bears' recent football past will return for Pro Day. 

Here's a look at The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly from the past week in Baylor Athletics. 


The Good

WBB Rolls the Tide — Early in their first-round opener vs. Alabama, Baylor WBB appeared to be on the verge of a historically embarrassing blowout. They couldn't score, and the Tide couldn't miss. But after weathering a 22-4 first-quarter storm, the Bears buckled down on defense and found their stroke on offense, outscoring' Bama 74-52 over the subsequent three frames to secure a 78-74 NCAA Tournament victory. It was fantastic to watch, and I imagine there was some final score shock for those who tuned out early. The Bears won by buckling down on defense and offensively, hitting an absurd 14 3-pointers as a team, including seven treys from Ja'Mee Asberry on her way to a team-best 26 points. Now, a Monday night meeting against 2-seed UConn in Storrs with a Sweet 16 trip on the line. 

2022-23 MBB — Sure, no one's thrilled with the ending, but this unique and talented group served up some entertaining wins and fun memories throughout the season. The most recent being the first-round NCAA Tournament win over UC Santa Barbara, and reaching the round of 32 sure as heck beats playing the role of Purdue. Still, the dreams of another championship are over, and we've undoubtedly seen the end of some exceptional talents in green and gold, as quite a few changes could occur this offseason.

Baseball Ws — Mitch Thompson's Bears were selected to finish last in the conference and very well may, but this weekend the Bears opened Big 12 play with a series win over Kansas State, thanks to a massive rally in an 8-4 win on Sunday. The Bears also shut out Rice earlier in the week. 

They'll face Sam Houston at home on Tuesday and then travel to Stillwater for a weekend series with the Top 25 Cowboys. 

Win No. 500 — Women's tennis head coach Joey Scrivano earned his 500th career victory as the Bears defeated Kansas State 4-2 on Sunday. It was an essential win outside the milestone, as it marked the team's first conference victory following an 0-3 start to Big 12 play, including a loss at No. 19 Kansas on the first leg of their trip. It'll be a busy few days back home at the Hurd Tennis Center as the Bears host Denver on Wednesday, West Virginia on Friday, and Iowa State on Sunday. 

Top 20 Softball — The Bears went 4-1 last week thanks to a 3-0 weekend sweep of future conference foe Houston after splitting their midweek doubleheader against South Dakota State. Glenn Moore and the Bears will host UT-Arlington on Wednesday before opening Big 12 play at Oklahoma State on Friday. 

Football News — We now know the Green and Gold game will officially kick off at noon on April 22nd at McLane Stadium. We also learned Pro Day will take place next Monday at the football facilities with 19 participants. In addition to top prospects like Siaki Ika and Connor Galvin, the program will also welcome back former standouts Charlie Brewer and RJ Sneed for the workout. It's cool because although both finished elsewhere, they spent most of their careers in Waco and played pivotal roles. The same occurred with John Lovett returning last year. They are Baylor Bears, and it will be cool to see them back on their old stomping grounds here in a few days. In the meantime, spring ball starts this week, so plenty is happening around the football program. 

The XFL — RB Abram Smith ran for 217 yards and three touchdowns on 23 carries as his DC Defenders moved to 5-0 in XFL play. Those numbers included this 70-yard score. 

 

A&T Honors — No. 1 Acro & Tumbling did not compete last week, but senior Kamryn Kitchens was named the NCATA's Athlete of the Week, and sophomore Jordan Gruendler earned Specialist of the Week honors for their performances in the win over No. 5 Oregon. A&T returns to action this week, hosting Frostburg State on Wednesday and Quinnipiac on Saturday. 

Equestrian — Senior Maddie Vorhies was named NCEA Flat Rider of the Month after a 2-0 March. The Bears earned the No. 4 seed at the Big 12 Championship in Stillwater and will face No. 5 Oklahoma State on Friday, followed by either TCU or Fresno State on Saturday. 

Men's Tennis W — It was a 1-2 week for the program, but they finished on a high note and unleashed some frustrations with a 7-0 over Prairie View A&M to earn a much-needed win and split their Sunday doubleheader. 


The Bad 

UConned — Monday's round of 32 WBB matchup brings back bad memories of the last time these two teams met in the 2021 Elite Eight. That will never cease to be a sore subject with a massive set of accompanying what-ifs for the Baylor fanbase. Everyone has moved on, but the facts remain: Dijonai Carrington got fouled, and the Bears win comfortably if Didi Richards doesn't get injured. And who knows how the subsequent turbulent offseason would've unfolded with another Natty potentially added to the trophy case. But, of course, none of that matters now, and perhaps the same results occur. Either way, that's a tough night to shake from the memory banks, although an upset on Monday night would be a therapeutic step forward. 


The Ugly

MBB Ending — Many didn't view Sunday's result as an upset, but it doesn't make the outcome any less upsetting or frustrating. Just more understandable. Creighton deserves a lot of credit, and they were the better team overall after sinking 22-22 from the free throw line and 11-24 from three. They also had an answer for every Baylor run. Those are winning numbers most of the time and certainly were on Sunday. We knew going in what Baylor's weaknesses were and knew at some point that would likely cost them. We just hoped it wouldn't occur for another round or two. Defense, three-point shooting, and free throws cost the Bears, and that's the least surprising thing. 

Top 25 Struggles — Men's Tennis fell 4-2 to No. 19 Illinois on Friday and 4-0 to No. 16 Wake Forest on Sunday, both at home. With those two losses, the Bears are now a shocking 1-10 against Top 25 opponents this spring. They'll next travel to Dallas on Thursday for a match with SMU. 

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The Good, The Bad & The Ugly from Baylor's Week of Sports

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