When Baylor and Kentucky met in December in Arlington, they played one of the most exciting games in the history of women’s basketball.
Neither coach expects another 133-130, four-overtime thriller today in the Sweet 16. Still, both are looking forward to an entertaining matchup with a berth in the regional finals on the line.
“It was one of those [games] that doesn’t have a big bearing [on Saturday],” Kentucky coach Matthew Mitchell said. “But when the season’s done and you’re looking back at certain moments in time and fun things to celebrate in the season, obviously it’s the highest scoring game of all time and it garnered a lot of national attention.”
Mitchell knows for his team to win, the Wildcats (26-8) must slow guard Odyssey Sims of Baylor (31-4). Or at least hold her to an “average” game.
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“She’s a difficult matchup and doing a great job of not only scoring but finding her teammates,” Mitchell said.
Sims’ 28.5 scoring average is second nationally and just 66 points short of Jackie Stiles’ all-time record for points in a season.
Baylor coach Kim Mulkey jokes that she hasn’t watched tape of the 133-130 defeat because, “Who wants to look at a loss?”
Still, she has faith that the mistakes are fixable.
“We’ll correct what we didn’t do right the first time in Arlington,” Mulkey said.
“They were a great team, still are. We’re looking forward to the rematch, but I think we will come out with a little more sense of urgency and get on them a little more than we did.”
The winner will meet the Notre Dame-Oklahoma State winner in the regional final Monday night.