Morgantown, WV — If you really think about (i.e. you think about it for less than a second with 0% effort), this win from Baylor was pre-ordained. Bears eat hikers all the time, and this game was just a reaffirmation of what we already know to be true.
That is a very stupid lede paragraph, but the point remains: Baylor was the overwhelming victor, and despite West Virginia’s #17 ranking, we all knew what was coming.
The Bears came in with the best defense in the country, allowing less than .649 points per possession (PPP), and with the best offense, too, scoring a whopping 1.201 PPP. West Virginia has a great defense, too, ranking third in defensive points per possession, but their offense is only 21st; still very good, but not enough against a team like Baylor.
Baylor was lead in points by potential WNBA star Alexis Jones, who had 21 points shot very well from behind the arc and from the free-throw line, though poorly overall. Behind her was star sophomore Kalani Brown, who scored 16 points on 6-8 shooting, and grabbed six boards.
You can go down the line with this Baylor team; I didn’t even mention Alexis Prince or Beatrice Mompremier or Lauren Cox or Nina Davis or the list goes on and on. It’s a stacked team, both in theory and in practice.
West Virginia was lead in points by Teana Muldrow, with 16 on 6-11 shooting, while also pulling down seven rebounds. Second on the team in points, at 1l, was a tie between Tynice Martin (who also two rebounds, two assists, and two steals) and Lanay Montgomery (who had two boards and four blocks).
One thing that stands out is that West Virginia was badly out-rebounded, losing the overall battle by fifteen and the offensive rebounding side by fourteen. That is not a recipe for beating a team as talented as Baylor.
West Virginia won’t get blown out like this again; I don’t think, nor would they lose to Baylor again by this wide a margin. This is an excellent team, with a Tier-1 defense, and they’ll have more tricks up their sleeves come next time, if there is a next time.
This game was a more a coronation of Baylor than a condemnation of the Mountaineers; Baylor really is just that good, and perhaps is the only team that will be able to take out Connecticut, should they meet in the championship.
Baylor heads to Oklahoma State on the seventh, and West Virginia finishes out its two-game homestand against #20 Oklahoma.