AMES, Iowa (AP) — Chloe Jackson scored 18 points, Juicy Landrum had 16 and top-ranked Baylor never trailed in beating No. 20 Iowa State 73-60 on Saturday to clinch the outright Big 12 title.
Kalani Brown added 14 points and seven rebounds for the Lady Bears (25-1, 15-0 Big 12). They won their 17th straight game and improved to 6-1 against ranked teams.
Iowa State gave Baylor something of a late scare, using a 14-2 run to pull to 65-56 with just under five minutes to go. But Landrum drilled a 3 to push the lead back to 12, and the Bears held Iowa State scoreless for over three minutes.
The Cyclones (20-7, 10-5) entered play with six wins in seven games and a 15-1 record at home, leading to speculation that Baylor’s unbeaten streak might be in jeopardy.
But the Lady Bears were up to the challenge, grabbing their first 10-point lead less than five minutes into the first quarter. Baylor then opened the second quarter on a 19-9 run, capped by a NaLyssa Smith layup that pushed its lead to 42-22.
Star Bridget Carleton did all she could to keep the Cyclones in the game, scoring 14 points in the third quarter alone to help Iowa State pull within 63-52 with 6:41 left. But Baylor flummoxed Carleton’s teammates, as Iowa State shot just 31.7 percent overall.
Carlleton finished with 28 points and eight rebounds.
THE BIG PICTURE
Baylor: The Lady Bears showed why they’re ranked No. 1 from the outset. Baylor made 18 of its first 27 shots in one of the tougher road venues in the country, and combined that with defense so stifling that even the shots Iowa State made were tightly contested.
Iowa St: The Cyclones were going for their first-ever win over a No. 1 team — and coach Bill Fennelly’s 500th career victory. Baylor made it clear from the tip that neither of those things was going to happen on Saturday.
Baylor: Hosts Texas on Monday night.
Iowa State: At Texas Tech on Tuesday night.