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Baylor Basketball

Baylor opens Big 12 Tournament with ugly 74-68 win over Kansas State

March 11, 2021

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KANSAS CITY — The No. 2 Baylor men’s basketball team (22-1, 13-1) advanced past Kansas State (9-20, 4-14) to the quarterfinals of the Big 12 tournament with a gritty 74-68 win. 

Well, that was closer than expected. Yes, Kansas State finished 8-19 on the regular season. However, it’s worth noting that Bruce Weber’s squad won four of their last five coming into today’s game and even upset Oklahoma. This team is not bad. 

This all considered, Baylor did not control this game. The Wildcats threw the kitchen sink out in a game where they had nothing to lose, but the Bears had something to prove after snubs across the Big 12 awards. And there is still much to prove after today’s game. 

The first half was weird. Baylor would go up 16-9, but that lead was quickly cut short as the Wildcats were just gritty. Davion Bradford put up 15 for Kansas State in the half, and without Jared Butler’s 11 and MaCio Teague’s 10, the Bears would’ve been in more trouble. 

The Wildcats shot just 2-7 behind the arc compared to Baylor’s 5-12, but 13 Bear turnovers compared to Kansas State’s nine kept the bad guys in the game for the entire opening 20. The score was just 36-34 at the end of the first half in favor of the Green and Gold. 

Baylor toyed with the idea of going on a big run early in the second half, but it never really got there. It wasn’t until the 7:45 mark in the second half that the Bears would take a double-digit lead on a Butler three. 

Teague and Mitchell led the onslaught for Baylor late with 16 and 13 in the second half respectively. And while the Bears improve their turnover troubles, the stat line for both teams was comparable. Kansas State just wanted to hang around. 

In the end, though, the Green and Gold were just too much and stumbled to the 74-68 win. 

Teague picked up right where he left off with a game-leading 24 points with Mitchell right behind him at 23. Baylor shot a solid 9-22 from deep and 13-14 from the foul line, but the rest of the stat book is bleak. See you tomorrow night. 

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