Baylor defeats the Texas Longhorns, 75-61 and await opponent for Big 12 Semifinals

The Baylor Bears defeated the Texas Longhorns 75-61 behind a tough defensive effort and a big scoring day from Taurean Prince.

The Baylor Bears defeated the Texas Longhorns in the Big 12 Tournament Quarterfinals 75-61. The Bears led for most of the game, and never trailed again after a Taurean Prince 3-pointer put them ahead 9-8.  With Texas shooting around 20% for most of the first half from the field, the Bears offense did just enough to build a double digit lead.  While in the Bears blowout victory in Austin was powered by turnovers, the Bears simply forced contested shots by Texas that were usually missed.  

With Texas' offense misfiring badly, the Bears built a 38-27 halftime lead after Jake Lindsey hit a corner three as the buzzer sounded.  It was a solid first half by the Bears, with Taurean Prince 10 points and 9 rebounds.  The Longhorns game plan throughout the game was to go down into the paint and try and finish shots close to the basket.  For the first 15 minutes, they simply couldn't. 

After that though, they found their rhythm, especially with Shaquille Cleare in at center for Prince Ibeh, who was riddled with foul trouble throughout.  Cleare finished with 13 points on 6-10 shooting.  Connor Lammert also was a key point of the Longhorn attack, hitting big 3-pointers and doing damage in the high post late in the game for his team high 15 points. 

With the Longhorns offense finally making some shots in the second half, the Bears turned the pressure up with their offense.  Even with UT hitting 9 of 11 shots during one span, the Bears lost only 2 points on their lead because their offense was keeping pace.  

Taurean Prince had a game high 24 points with Al Freeman and Rico Gathers scoring in double figures as well.  The Bears also got 9 points from Jonathan Motley, who was also limited with foul trouble throughout, but hit all three of his field goal attempts. 

With their offense humming, the Bears built a 19 point lead halfway through the second half.  At that point, the Bears slowed their tempo down and started to milk the clock, which disrupted their offensive flow.  After building that 59-40 lead, the Longhorns would score 10 straight points to cut the Bears lead to 9 points with over 7-minutes to go. 

The Bears would turn it back on enough though, and keep the lead above 8 before pulling away for their 14 point victory. With the win, the Bears will advance to the Big 12 Semifinals, awaiting the winner of Kansas and Kansas State this afternoon.

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