Women’s Top 25 roundup: Balanced attack leads No. 18 Baylor over No. 22 West Virginia

By Thomson Reuters Feb 10, 2024 | 8:32 PM

No. 18 Baylor weathered No. 22 West Virginia’s suffocating defense long enough to prevail 65-58 on Saturday in Waco, Texas.

Four players scored in double figures for the host Bears (18-5, 7-5 Big 12), who improved to 5-1 this season against ranked opponents. Darianna Littlepage-Buggs led the quartet with 14 points, Bella Fontleroy and Aijha Blackwell added 12 apiece and Dre’una Edwards tacked on 10.

Baylor held on despite committing three late turnovers and limited itself with 19 giveaways against a West Virginia defense that entered Saturday ranked second in Division I with 24.7 takeaways per game.

Kyah Watson paired 12 points with her game-high 15 rebounds for the Mountaineers (20-3, 9-3), whose seven-game winning streak was snapped.

No. 7 Texas 65, TCU 43

Madison Booker made three of four shots from the field to lead the Longhorns’ uber-efficient third quarter that helped them pull away from the host Horned Frogs in Fort Worth, Texas.

Texas (22-3, 9-3 Big 12) scored more points in the third period (26) than it did in the first two combined (23). The Longhorns drilled 10 of 12 field-goal attempts to push its 23-20 halftime edge to a 49-32 advantage entering the final stanza. The Longhorns finished 46.6 percent from the floor and limited TCU to 29.2 percent shooting.

Booker tallied 13 points, Shay Holle added 14 and Shaylee Gonzales paired five points with eight assists for Texas in its fourth straight win. Agnes Emma-Nnopu and Aaliyah Roberson each scored 11 points for the Horned Frogs (15-8, 2-10), who have lost eight of nine games played following a 14-0 start.

No. 8 Kansas State 69, Oklahoma State 68

Serena Sundell scored nine of her 16 points in the fourth quarter and delivered the eventual game-winning layup with 26 seconds left to slide the host Wildcats past the upset-minded Cowgirls in Manhattan, Kan.

Brylee Glenn fueled Kansas State (21-3, 10-2 Big 12) with her season-high 23 points, while Gabby Gregory added 11 to complement Zyanna Walker’s 10 off the bench. The Wildcats won the turnover battle 20-6 and held a 15-3 advantage on points off turnovers.

Stailee Heard and Quincy Noble led Oklahoma State (11-12, 4-8) with 19 points apiece. Heard corralled a game-high 12 rebounds, while Lior Garzon drilled 4 of 7 3-pointers and finished with 14 points. Hannah Gusters scored 13 and had a chance to win it for the Cowgirls at the buzzer, but her foul-line jumper sailed left.

No. 19 Gonzaga 71, Loyola Marymount 47

The Bulldogs continue to cruise even without leading scorer Yvonne Ejim (20.3 points per game), as eight different scorers anchored the West Coast Conference leaders throughout a comfortable win over the visiting Lions in Spokane, Wash.

Gonzaga (24-2, 11-0 WCC) shot 50.9 percent from the field and hit 9 of 23 3-pointers in its second game without Ejim. The senior forward trains in Hungary with Canada’s Senior National Team ahead of this summer’s Paris Olympics.

Kaylynne Troung scored 13 points, Brynna Maxwell 11 and Calli Stokes 10 in the Bulldogs’ 18th straight win. Soufia Inoussa’s 10 points led a cast of nine scorers for Loyola Marymount (9-14, 4-7).

No. 21 Creighton 88, DePaul 59

The host Bluejays started hot from the field against the Blue Demons in Omaha, Neb., and mounted a comfortable lead they rode throughout the final three quarters to secure their first 10-game winning streak since the 2008-09 season

Emma Ronsiek drilled 5 of 6 shots to lead Creighton’s 9-of-13 shooting output in the opening quarter, which propelled the Bluejays (20-3, 11-2 Big East) to a 30-13 advantage after one. Ronsiek finished with 29 points and made all 10 of her free-throw attempts. Lauren Jensen added 19 points and eight rebounds in the win.

Ayana Peoples led DePaul (12-14, 4-9) with 17 points and nine rebounds. Jorie Allen bundled 15 points with seven boards for the Blue Demons, who were outshot from the floor, 46.8 percent to 32.7 percent.

No. 24 Oklahoma 86, Iowa State 72

Payton Verhulst racked up 25 points, eight rebounds, six assists and four steals as the Sooners raced past the Cyclones in Ames, Iowa.

Verhulst canned 6 of 11 3-pointers, while Nevaeh Tot paired 10 points with her game-high nine assists for Oklahoma (17-6, 11-1 Big 12), which outrebounded Iowa State (13-9, 7-5) 47-37. With their eighth straight win, the Sooners are off to their best 12-game start in conference play since the 2008-09 team went 12-0 to begin league action on its way to the Final Four.

Audi Crooks hit for 14 points to lead the Cyclones, who also got 13 points from Emily Ryan and 10 from Nyamer Diew.

No. 25 Princeton 67, Penn 54

The Tigers secured five of their 27 takeaways in the fourth quarter and shut down the Quakers late to pull away in an Ivy League matchup at the Palestra in Philadelphia.

Kaitlyn Chen scored 20 points on 8-of-14 shooting and Chet Nweke chipped in 17 on her 6-of-8 clip as Princeton (18-3, 8-0 Ivy League) won its 13th straight game. Chen and Nweke each scored seven points in the fourth quarter as the Tigers held Penn without a bucket for more than five minutes until Marianna Papazoglou’s layup with 33 seconds to play made it 65-54.

Ese Ogbevire tallied a career-high 16 points for the Quakers (11-10, 3-5), who trailed 48-46 early in the fourth quarter before being outscored 19-8 over the game’s final 9:13. Jordan Obi led Penn with 17 points and nine boards. The Quakers tallied seven takeaways and were outscored 28-2 in points off turnovers.

–Field Level Media