With senior point guard Tweety Carter out of the Bears' lineup for four games, true freshman point guard A.J. Walton got the start in his first career collegiate game. Walton not only showed confidence in his ball handling skills, but also knew how to find the hot hand. On Friday, that hot hand belonged to junior guard Lacedarius Dunn. Dunn, who shot 10-16 from the floor and a perfect 4-4 from beyond the arc, finished with a game-high 32 points.
"It helps a lot. All you have to do is get him the ball," said Walton. He can create his own shot, so it helps to have a veteran player like him on the team."
With Carter's absence, Dunn realizes his leadership role on a Baylor squad with plenty of new faces.
"I knew I had to come out, and right away be ready to play," said Dunn of his performance. "I knew I couldn't take any plays off, or come out sluggish. So I came out and shot the ball. My point guards and my teammates, being the players they are, got me the ball."
When Dunn was not knocking down jumpers, Ekpe Udoh was. In his first start as a Baylor Bear, the junior transfer from Michigan, recorded his first double double wearing green and gold. Scoring 18 points and grabbing 11 rebounds, Udoh showed flashed of defensive dominance under the basket. Blocking 3 shots, Udoh hauled in 9 of his 11 rebounds on defense.
The Bears out-rebounded Norfolk State 43-35, and only committed 12 turnovers in the game. Center Josh Lomers helped out on both ends of the court, recording 4 blocks, 2 steals, while adding 6 points. Fellow starter, forward Anthony Jones, only scored 2 points, but helped out on the glass by grabbing 7 rebounds and dishing out 4 assists.
Baylor Head Coach Scott Drew was pleased with the victory, but understands there is plenty of room to grow with such a young and inexperienced team.
"I am very pleased how we handled the ball. I think you can see, especially those first couple of games, why it is important to have veterans. You can tell who the experienced players were compared to the inexperienced," said Drew after his team's victory on Friday night.
The Bears next host Hartford on Sunday afternoon in the Ferrell Center.
Dunn Leads Baylor To Win In Season Opener
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