TCU women fail to tame No. 3 Baylor

TCU guard Natalie Ventress, right, goes for a loose ball against Baylor guard Ieshia Small during the second half Tuesday night.
TCU guard Natalie Ventress, right, goes for a loose ball against Baylor guard Ieshia Small during the second half Tuesday night. Special to the Star-Telegram

TCU’s up-tempo offense and aggressive defense didn’t intimidate No. 3 Baylor on Tuesday night at the University Recreation Center.

“We’ll run with you,” Baylor coach Kim Mulkey said. “We like to run.”

While keeping up with the Horned Frogs, Baylor was able to control the post, outscoring TCU 60-24 in the paint in an 89-67 victory.

Baylor (19-1, 8-0 Big 12) also dominated the boards, outrebounding TCU 50-29, including 21 offensive rebounds.

“We knew they changed their offense and were playing that style offense, but we also thought we could expose them on the inside, and I think we did,” Mulkey said.

TCU (12-7, 4-4) stayed with Baylor through most of the first half, trailing just 24-23 with 10 minutes to go before halftime.

Through the last seven minutes of the half, though, TCU turned the ball over five times, resulting in nine points for the Bears. It was part of an 18-9 Baylor run.

With the Bears continuing to extend their lead in the second half, TCU coach Raegan Pebley went with 6-foot-6 sophomore center Klara Bradshaw, who scored a season-high 10 points and tied season highs with seven rebounds and four blocks.

Pebely said Bradshaw played with confidence and emotion that hadn’t been seen this season.

“I know she can change a lot of shots inside, and just that emotion that she played with,” Pebley said. “I just always think she’s going to play better when you tap into that emotional edge.”

With 12 minutes to go, Bradshaw swatted a Nina Davis layup attempt, which brought some energy back into the crowd.

“I think my mindset coming into this game was there’s nothing to lose here,” Bradshaw said. “Just play as best as I can. I know that I haven’t had the best games this year, but I wanted to prove that I could play against a good team and still contribute.”

Davis finished with a game-high 24 points and 11 rebounds for Baylor, followed by the Bears’ other posts, Khadijiah Cave with 21 and Sune Agbuke with 12.

Baylor was able to hold TCU’s leading scorer, Zahna Medley, to just six points on 1-of-11 shooting. Junior guard Veja Hamilton netted a team-high 15 points for the Frogs, and senior forward Chelsea Prince added 13.

Medley was 0 for 4 from behind the arc, and TCU was held to just four 3-pointers. The Frogs entered Tuesday’s game shooting 35 percent on 3-pointers in Big 12 play.

“Baylor is a great team, but we really believe in what we are too and what we’re growing to be,” Pebley said. “I’m very proud of our team, and we’re just going to keep getting better.”

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