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Lady Bears upset Cyclones in thriller at Ferrell Center

Jan. 25, 2001

Baylor women claim 1st victory over a top-10 foe

By MARK ALLAN PETERSON

Sports writer

A season that began with uncertain expectations has turned into one of postseason fever following the Lady Bears' 79-74 upset win over No. 7-ranked Iowa State University at the Ferrell Special Events Center Wednesday night. A crowd of more than 5,300 fans, the third largest in Lady Bear history, was on hand to see the game.

The win marked the first time the Lady Bears have defeated a top-10 opponent in team history. It also added a much-needed boost to the Lady Bears following a three-game losing skid.

'We were on a losing streak, that's no secret. I don't think I'll ever coach a basketball team that never got emotionally down from that,' head Coach Kim Mulkey said following the game.

Although the final score was close, the Lady Bears had control throughout the entire contest.

Baylor led 47-29 at the end of the first half, inspired by reserves Jessica Stratton and Brittany Bruns, who combined for 16 points.

'I'm speechless,' Bruns said. 'I'm still in shock that we beat them.'

Following the game, Mulkey praised Bruns' efforts.

'You had a kid in Brittany Bruns that had not seen many minutes in the last weeks or month,' she said. 'Those kind of kids are why I'm in coaching. When she got her opportunity, she took advantage of it.'

The Lady Cyclones, now 15-2 overall and 5-1 in Big 12 play, made a strong comeback in the second half, cutting the lead to 62-57 with 8:39 left.

Despite the close score, the Lady Bears managed to hold control throughout the rest of the game.

'I thought that we hit some shots early that extended the lead [to] 18 at the half. You knew they were going to make a run,' Mulkey said. 'You're not ranked 7th in the country for nothing. And instead of us cracking, we used the shot clock wisely and kept our composure.'

The closest Iowa State got was a three-point deficit with 1:15 to play, following a lay-in by Lady Cyclone sophomore guard Lindsey Wilson.

The Lady Cyclones had one last chance, down 77-74 with 29.6 seconds to play but Wilson missed a three-pointer. Baylor guard Nicole Collins was then fouled, and shot two for two from the freethrow line.

The Lady Cyclones then missed three straight shots, with forward Danielle Crockrom grabbing a rebound with 1.5 seconds to play, sealing the win for the Lady Bears.

Crockrom, coming off a career performance against Texas A&M University, led all scorers with 25 points.

The Lady Bears now improve to 14-3 on the season and 3-3 in Big 12. They next face No. 17-ranked University of Texas on Saturday at the Ferrell Special Events Center.

'This means a big, needed win to get back in this conference race,' Mulkey said. 'We now got to get ready for Texas.'

Lady Bear Michelle Neely makes a move down low against the Lady Cyclone defense in the team's upset win over No.7-ranked Iowa State at the Ferrell Center Wednesday night.