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Feb 24, 2024 2:54 pm

No. 2 Houston outlasts No. 11 Baylor in overtime

Baylor Bears

Emanuel Sharp scored 18 points and J’Wan Roberts added 17 points, eight rebounds and three blocks as No. 2 Houston outlasted No. 11 Baylor 82-76 in overtime Saturday in a Big 12 Conference clash in Waco, Texas.

Houston (24-3, 11-3) won its fifth straight and remains alone atop the conference standings but had its hands full with Baylor (19-8, 8-6). The teams squared off for just the third time since 2002 and for the first time since the 2021 Final Four in Indianapolis, a game won by Baylor en route to the national championship.

The Cougars led by as many as 17 points in the first half and by 16 at halftime before Baylor roared back. The Bears’ Yves Missi made a layup with four seconds to tie the game at 69 but missed a free throw.

Houston’s Jamal Shead sank a 3-pointer at the buzzer that seemingly won the game for the Cougars but replays disallowed the basket, sending the contest into the extra period.

The teams traded baskets early in OT before two free throws by L.J. Cryer gave the Cougars a 73-71 lead with 3:06 remaining. RayJ Dennis went 1 of 2 from the line to pull Baylor back to within a point before a jumper by Houston’s Ja’vier Francis pushed the lead back to three.

Two free throws by Cryer with 33 seconds left made it a five-point game, all but sealing the win for the Cougars.

Cryer added 15 points for Houston while Shead produced 12 points and 10 assists.

Ja’Kobe Walter led the Bears with 23 points, with Dennis adding 21. Jalen Bridges had 17 points and 13 rebounds and Jayden Nunn contributed 11 points as Baylor lost its second straight game.

Houston parlayed its defensive pressure and torrid shooting to dominate the initial 11 minutes of the game. The Cougars hit 11 of their first 17 shots while forcing Baylor into eight turnovers in that stretch. Houston led 41-25 at the break.

The 16-point margin at the break was Baylor’s biggest halftime deficit at home since 2018.

The Bears turned the tables in the second half, outscoring the visitors 15-2 over the first five and a half minutes.

–Field Level Media

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