Baylor wins ‘road’ game at home
MaCio Teague heard the crowd with No. 18 Baylor at home and tipping off about the same time the Bears’ football team started the Big 12 championship game 100 miles north of campus.
It wasn’t hard for the sophomore guard to figure out which squad many of those fans were there to watch: 12thranked Arizona.
“It felt like a road game,” Teague said after scoring 19 points in the Bears’ 63-58 victory Saturday. “Especially when they did the, ‘U of, U of A,’ whatever they were doing. I heard it. It was pretty loud in there.”
Freddie Gillespie had 17 points and 13 rebounds as the Bears (7-1) handed the Wildcats their first loss.
Admission was free at Baylor’s campus arena because of the Big 12 title game against Oklahoma at the home of the Dallas Cowboys.
It was supposed to be the first true road game for the Wildcats (9-1), but their fans might have outnumbered the Baylor contingent. As Teague heard, they loudly chanted “U of A” before the Baylor introductions but had a hard time getting into the game early, with Arizona giving up a 15-0 run and shooting 33 percent in the first half.
The Wildcats, whose 52-game home winning streak was stopped by Baylor last December, did enough to stay close despite shooting 27% and had the fans chanting several times in the second half.
Arizona finally got the deficit under six by scoring five points on one possession to get within 57-56 with less than two minutes remaining. Jemarl Baker Jr. hit a 3 as a foul was called and Zeke Nnaji made both free throws.
Teague, who was 9 of 10 on free throws, made a pair at the other end, then blocked a 3-point attempt by Nico Mannion, who led the Wildcats with 15 points. Leading by four, Baylor got another block from Gillespie in the final minute.
Nnaji scored 12 for Arizona, which made just two of 18 3-pointers after coming in sixth in the nation at 43% shooting from long range. The last miss came from Josh Green with a chance to tie in the final seconds.
“We hung in there,” Arizona coach Sean Miller said. “To have an opportunity late in the game that’s what you really hope can happen on the road. It was just bizarre how we got to that point because it certainly wasn’t because of our offense.”
Sharing the fun: Aaron Thompson believes unselfish play is a major part of Butler’s success.
Thompson and Sean McDermott each scored 16 points to lead No. 24 Butler to a 76-62 win over visiting Florida.
“Nobody cares who scores, we’re just trying to get the best shot on that possession,” Thompson said. “As long as we are getting good shots, everyone is happy.”
Thompson made 6 of 7 shots and delivered seven assists for the Bulldogs (9-0).
McDermott missed his first four 3point shots and then four of his final five. He contributed a team-high seven rebounds.
“I don’t know if we have a harder working player than Sean McDermott,” Butler coach LaVall Jordan said. “He’s made more of an effort to become a more complete player. Obviously, his strength is shooting the basketball, but he’s able to defend better.”
Jordan Tucker added 13 points off the bench for the Bulldogs. Kamar Baldwin, who was averaging a team-high 17.5 points for Butler, scored 12 points.
Around the nation: Ochai Agbaji scored 20 points and Devon Dotson added 18 points to lead No. 2 Kansas (7-1) to a 72-58 victory over No. 20 Colorado in Lawrence, Kan . ... EJ Montgomery scored a career-high 25 points, Keion Brooks added 15 off the bench and Kentucky (7-1) dominated Fairleigh Dickinson 83-52 for its 600th victory at Rupp Arena . ... Precious Achiuwa scored eight of his 14 points in the final 4 minutes to rally No. 15 Memphis to an 65-57 win at UAB. The Tigers (8-1) trailed 17-0 early and 40-26 at halftime . ... Kaleb Wesson scored 28 points and had 10 rebounds for his ninth career double-double, and No. 6 Ohio State (9-0, 1-0 Big Ten) scored 43 points in the game’s final 12 minutes to rout visiting Penn State 106-74.