NaLyssa Smith led four Baylor players scoring in double figures with 18 points, and the No. 2 Bears put the first blemish on Washington State’s résumé with an 89-66 victory in the Paradise Jam women’s basketball tournament in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, on Thursday.
Chanelle Molina led all scorers with 25 points for WSU (4-1), but the Cougars couldn’t keep pace with the defending national champions. Baylor (6-0) led 19-7 after one quarter and carried a 44-24 lead into halftime.
Molina made 8 of 14 shots from the field, including 4 of 8 from beyond the 3-point arc, and Hristova made 7 of her 13 shots. The rest of the team combined for a 7-for-26 performance (27%). Baylor, meanwhile, made 36 of 64 shots (56%) as a team and scored 58 of its points in the paint.
Queen Egbo scored 16 points for the Bears, DiDi Richards (14) added 14 and Te’a Cooper had 10.
Borislava Hristova tossed in 15 points for the Cougars, who face another sizable challenge against South Carolina on Friday at 5 p.m. The Gamecocks, who celebrated a national championship in 2017, are ranked fifth nationally.
The Cougars will remain in the Virgin Islands through Saturday, when they face No. 17 Indiana at 2:45 p.m.
Northern Arizona 3, Idaho 2: The Vandals allowed a two-game lead and an upset bid slip away in a 19-25, 24-26, 25-18, 25-20, 15-8 loss to third-seeded Northern Arizona in the Big Sky Tournament quarterfinals in Sacramento, California.
Nicole Ball led Idaho (13-18) with 18 kills, and Kyra Palmbush and Paige Rupiper had 12 and 11, respectively. Donnee Janzen compiled 54 assists, and Becca Owen added 23 digs for the Vandals, who entered the event as the No. 6 seed.
Heaven Harris led NAU (21-10) with 21 kills, and Taylor Jacobsen had 19.
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