No. 14 Baylor falls 61-59 in OT at Texas, which keeps its NCAA tournament hopes alive



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AUSTIN, Texas — The Texas Longhorns had just gone ahead of Baylor in overtime, and Bears' guard Kenny Chery had less than 5 seconds to bring the 14th-ranked Bears back.

Chery drove up court but missed a shot at the rim — Texas' Myles Turner was credited with a block — and the Bears lost 61-59 Monday, snapping their four-game winning streak and the Longhorns' four-game losing streak.

"They're a good defensive team," Chery said. "They are going to contest every shot."

Texas (18-12) improved to 7-10 in the Big 12 with one game remaining, keeping its hopes for an NCAA tournament bid alive. Last season, Oklahoma State became the first Big 12 team to get an at-large bid with a losing conference record (8-10).

"Coach (Rick Barnes) said this gives us another breath," Texas guard Javan Felix said.

The Longhorns took the lead when Isaiah Taylor made a tear-drop shot in the lane with 4.8 seconds remaining.

Taylor, the point guard, played only 6 minutes in the first half because of foul trouble. He was on the bench for all but 5 minutes in the second half and that was Barnes' choice.

"He wasn't doing what we needed him to do defensively," said Barnes, who won his 400th game at Texas.

But Taylor was back for the overtime, making another tear-drop shot early in the overtime before the game-winner.

Seven players from both teams were ejected in the overtime for leaving the bench during a brief skirmish between Taylor and Baylor's Royce O'Neale.

Demarcus Holland led Texas with 12 points. Kendal Yancy scored 11, one more than Felix, who began the overtime with a 3-pointer.

Taurean Prince led Baylor with 17 points. Rico Gathers had 12 points and 11 rebounds.

After an exchange of turnovers in the overtime, Taylor and O'Neale fell to the court, prompting the brief skirmish. Four Longhorns, including starters Yancy and Cam Ridley, were ejected along with key reserves Prince Ibeh and Connor Lammert. Three Baylor players, starter Johnathan Motley and subs Ishmail Wainright and John Heard, were tossed.

Barnes and Baylor coach Scott Drew said they expected that none of the players would be suspended by the Big 12.

The Bears (22-8, 10-7) led by 10 points with a little more than 6 minutes remaining, a lead they built with 3-pointers by Prince, Lester Medford and Al Freeman in a span of less than 3 minutes.

Texas' Jon Holmes hit a long 3-pointer with 1:04 left in regulation to tie the game at 54. Ibeh then blocked a driving shot by Chery. Texas had 11 blocks in the game, six by Turner.

"I thought I had a clear lane," Chery said.

Said Drew, "We had too many times when we challenged the shot-blockers."

Even so, Baylor, unlike Texas, doesn't have to worry about receiving an invitation to the NCAA tournament.

"They played hard, and they won," Prince said. "It's frustrating, but we're still in a good position. We're going home happy."

TIP-INS

Texas: The Longhorns, who have five players between 6-foot-8 and 6-11, lead the nation in blocked shots with nearly eight a game. They set a school record with 14 during a loss at Kansas on Saturday. But they have not used their length and athleticism to induce turnovers by opponents. They rank last in the Big 12 with nine a game. Baylor had 11 Monday. Barnes says his guards are not aggressive enough in that area.

Baylor: The Bears have been fast starters this season, getting outscored in the first half only three times. In those games, they beat Memphis in Las Vegas but lost at Oklahoma and Oklahoma State. Baylor has outscored opponents in the first half in its last 10 games.

TEXAS FARES BETER THAN MOST

The Longhorns hit 8 of 23 3-pointers against Baylor (34.8 percent). Felix made three of them. This season the Bears have supplied evidence refuting an old college basketball axiom that teams that use a zone defense are vulnerable to 3-point shooting. Baylor, using mostly zone, has limited opponents to less than 29 percent accuracy, lowest in the Big 12 and ninth nationally. The Bears also rebound well, another area of concern for teams that play zone.

UP NEXT

Texas hosts Kansas State on Saturday.

Baylor hosts Texas Tech on Friday.

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