WACO, Texas – Senior guard Liz Repella scored a season-high 29 points against Baylor, but it wasn’t enough for the win as Baylor effectively ended the 2011 season for the West Virginia women’s basketball team, 82-68, at the Ferrell Center on Tuesday night.
The closest the Mountaineers (24-10) came to the Baylor lead was seven points, with 11:29 remaining in the game. Vanessa House sank a shot from beyond the arc at the 13:18 mark, sparking an 8-0 run that culminated in a 3-point shot from Ayana Dunning that brought the score to 58-51, and silenced the crowd of 8,436 fans that came out to support Baylor.
West Virginia started the game fast, staying even with the Bears (33-2) early, even taking a 7-6 lead within the first three minutes. That’s when foul trouble began for the Mountaineers. By the end of the first half, West Virginia had racked up 12 fouls, severely costing the team at the foul line. Baylor went 15-of-18 from the charity stripe during the first half alone, accounting for nearly half of its 43 first half points.
“Our girls did not quit,” coach Carey said. “They kept playing hard. They did what they had to do. This game was either going to be called close or it was going to let you get physical. Well, the game was called close and because of that we got several people in foul trouble. It is what it is. I was very proud of our girls. They did not quit playing hard.”
West Virginia went into the locker room down 43-32, and in bad foul trouble. The situation didn’t get better in the second half, either. Sophomore Asya Bussie
fouled out with 7:11 left to go, and at game’s end, seven Mountaineer players had three or more fouls.
“It was pretty physical,” Bussie said. “They called the fouls one-sided to me. The foul situation explained everything. It was just a physical game the whole time.”
In addition to Repella’s double-figure game, fellow senior House posted a season-high 14 points on 8-of-12 shooting. Bussie rounded out the top three scorers, scoring nine points on the night.
6-foot-8 Baylor center Brittney Griner led the Bears in scoring, scoring 30 points and racking up eight blocks. She was followed by guards Melissa Jones and Odyssey Sims, who posted 13 points each and forward Destiny Williams, who had ten.
“We tried to double and we just did not do a good job of that when we did double,” Carey said. “They did a good job of clearing. We were doubling for four and they would clear. I would take a couple of timeouts because their four kept coming. They did a good job adjusting to it and they have seen it all year. Then they would skip pass and we would run out. They hit a couple of three’s on that.”
Baylor shot 51.0 percent (25-of-49) from field goal range, 44.4 percent (4-of-9) from 3-point range and 80.0 percent (28-of-35) from the charity stripe, tying the record for the most shots made from the free throw line against the Mountaineers.
In comparison, the Mountaineers shot 41.7 percent (25-of-60) from field goal range, 41.2 percent (7-of-17) from beyond the arc and 64.7 percent (11-of-17) from free throw range.
With the post presence of Griner, Baylor was able to score 38 points in the paint while the Mountaineers were only able to put up 24. However, West Virginia scored 19 points off of turnovers to Baylor’s 15, ten fast break points to Baylor’s four and 21 bench points to Baylor’s 13.
The Bears, however, out-rebounded the Mountaineers 38-27.
The loss concludes the 2010-11 season for the Mountaineers.