No. 6 Baylor keeps undefeated season alive with win over Seton Hall
WACO, Texas (AP) — RayJ Dennis and Ja’Kobe Walter hit consecutive 3s before a highlight dunk by one of Baylor’s young big men. The sixth-ranked Bears were back in control on the way to staying undefeated.
“People love 3s and they love dunks, and you get both of them this year,” Baylor coach Scott Drew said. “If you like highlights, there’s going to be plenty of Baylor SportsCenter plays this year.”
The Bears went on to a 78-60 win over Seton Hall in the Big East-Big 12 Battle on Tuesday night, with that quick segment coming after the Pirates got within three points in the second half.
Dennis hit his 3 before assisting on the one by Walter, which was set up by Josh Ojianwuna’s steal before the 6-foot-10 sophomore drove from the top of the key through the lane for an emphatic two-handed dunk.
Dennis finished with 17 points and seven assists, and Walter scored 15 points with four 3-pointers.
“It just gives us a balanced attack,” Dennis said of the inside-out plays. “It’s just a testament to my teammates and how much work they put in, just knocking shots down when it comes to them and finishing plays.”
In the first half, Dennis made a nifty rising lob pass from outside the 3-point line to leaping 7-foot freshman Yves Missi for a two-handed slam over 6-7 forward David Tubek for a 28-15 lead. Missi finished with 13 points and eight rebounds.
Kadary Richmond had 18 points for Seton Hall (5-3) while Dre Davis scored 12 and Jaden Bediako 10.
The Pirates, down by as many as 14 points before halftime, got within 50-47 on two free throws by Elijah Hutchins-Everett with 13:15 left. That capped an 11-3 run Davis started with a jumper and added a 3-pointer.
“They came out and took control of the game early and we were just fighting an uphill battle the rest of the game,” Pirates coach Shaheen Holloway said “Disappointing. I thought we had a good game plan coming into it. ... Can’t play in spurts against good teams.”
Walter made three 3s in the game’s first 5 1/2 minutes to put Baylor ahead 15-9. The true freshman then missed five shots in a row and didn’t score again until making three free throws after being fouled on a 3 early in the second half. He finished 4-of-10 shooting, after 4 of 11 his previous game.
“We never worry about his shooting. He puts in way too much time and we’ve seen way too many week makes in practice,” Drew said. “His all-around game is getting better.’
The Big 12 won all three games it played against Big East teams on Tuesday to clinch the conference challenge 7-3 with one game left to play. It was the first true road game this season for Seton Hall, and the Pirates hit their first three shots as the lead changed three times in the first 2 1/2 minutes before Walter’s second 3 put Baylor ahead to stay.
MILESTONE AT FERRELL
The Bears got their 400th win in the Ferrell Center, the arena they have played in since 1988. They have only one more game before moving into a new building Jan. 2. They are 400-169 in Ferrell.
Seton Hall is back home in New Jersey for their annual game against instate rival Rutgers on Saturday night.
Baylor doesn’t play again until Dec. 16 with final exams getting started this week. The Bears return to action then against Michigan State in Detroit, and play 22nd-ranked Duke in Madison Square Garden four days after that.
Get poll alerts and updates on AP Top 25 basketball throughout the season. Sign up here.
AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-basketball-poll and https://apnews.com/hub/college-basketball
- Clark tops Maravich for NCAA Division I scoring mark
- No. 3 UConn routs Seton Hall, earns 1st Big East regular-season title in 25 years
- No. 23 Gonzaga snaps No. 17 Saint Mary's 16-game winning streak
- Edey leads No. 2 Purdue past Michigan State
- Zeigler, No. 4 Tennessee close huge week with win at No. 14 Alabama