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Big 12 Basketball: Baylor overwhelms Kansas State with hard-pressing defense

posted by anngaff, a Women Talk Sports blogger
today, March 11, 2011 at 3:52pm EST

About anngaff:

Chief Technical Officer, Women Talk Sports. I competed in Track & Field and Cross-Country in college at the University of Nebraska and competed professionally in Track & Field (3000m Steeplechase) fr...more

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The Baylor Bears held Kansas State's Brittany Chambers, who has had 84 three-pointers this season, to just one three-pointer today in the semi-final of the Big 12 Basketball Tournament. They also pushed the Wildcats out of the paint so much that 33 of of their 53 points were from beyond the three-point line.

"You know what we're talking about during every timeout and it's not offense," said Baylor head coach Kim Mulkey, "A lot of these kids come into the program and are great players but have never had to guard anybody. We focus on defensive play."

Mulkey went on to note that Brittany Griner's size and presence in the middle forces other teams to alter their play and not go up for a layup when they normally would have. "Someone needs to follow her and get stats on that," said Mulkey.

Griner led Baylor with 21 points but the team was well-rounded, with 19 from Destiny Williams, 14 from Odyssey Sims and 10 from Kimetria Hayden.

"[Griner] and I are just having a really good feel for each other right now in the tournament," said Williams, "If she gets a couple [defenders] on her, she looks out to me and vice versa."

Kansas State head coach Deb Patterson said her players saw today how not doing the little things against a team like Baylor can make a big difference.

"It's like coming home from a day at work and you aren't happy with your day. You get up tomorrow and say, 'let's get back to work,'" said Patterson, "We're going to comeback [for the NCAA Tournament] very hungry and motivated by the picture of what we look like when we don't do the little things, particularly against a team like Baylor."

Baylor will face the winner of the second semi-final between Oklahoma and Texas A&M at noon eastern tomorrow.

Check our Big 12 Basketball Championships coverage for more updates.

Also follow me (@anngaff), Cheryl Coward of HoopFeed.com (@hoopfeed) through the final on Saturday.

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