WACO, Texas (AP) -- Baylor's guard tandem of Aaron Bruce and
Curtis Jerrells made sure Baylor didn't lose another close game
against a tough Big 12 opponent.
Bruce scored a season-high 24 points, and Jerrells added 23 and
hit the go-ahead basket to lead Baylor past Texas Tech 73-70
Saturday.Baylor (11-5, 1-2 Big 12) had a second-half lead against No. 8
Texas A&M on Tuesday before losing 61-51. The Bears also dropped a
four-point decision last week to No. 9 Oklahoma State.But Bruce and Jerrells made sure the Bears didn't let another
tight one slip away and prevented Texas Tech coach Bob Knight from
winning his 883rd game."It was huge because it gives young guys confidence that not
only can they win, but they can also win in the close games,"
Baylor head coach Scott Drew said. "The more close games you can
win, the better it is for a young team."Texas Tech (13-5, 2-1) saw its three-game winning streak end and
lost for the first time since coach Knight became the winningest
coach in NCAA Division I history. His win total remains at 882.Bruce, Baylor's top scorer last season at 18 points per contest,
had been mired in a mini-shooting slump. He had just 12 points on
2-of-19 shooting the past three games before breaking out against
the Red Raiders.Jerrells was 9-of-13 from the floor and his floater in the lane
gave Baylor a 71-69 lead with 1:26 left."Baylor's two guards, Jerrells and Bruce, played really well,"
Knight said. "We said all along it was going to be a game of
perimeter players and theirs really beat ours. They beat ours
badly. Those two kids made a lot of big buckets."Bruce hit six 3-pointers in the game, including consecutive long
range shots that gave Baylor a 69-66 lead.He attributed his success Saturday to extra time in the gym."I've been spending from an hour to two hours just shooting,"
Bruce said. "I knew I had put up enough repetitions to hit shots.
It was just a matter of getting good looks."Jarrius Jackson tied the game at 69 with a 3-pointer as the shot
clock expired before Jerrells hit the go-ahead hoop.Tim Bush hit two free throws that put the Bears ahead 73-70 with
23 seconds left. Jackson missed two 3-pointers in the final seconds
that could have tied the score."This serves our confidence well," Bruce said. "It was a
great win and we knew it would be a battle for 40 minutes."Kevin Rogers had 13 points and 14 rebounds for Baylor.Texas Tech's Jon Plefka scored 17 of his career-high 19 points
in the second half, and Jackson had 16.In the second half, the game was tied seven times and neither
team led by more than six points.Texas Tech led 35-32 at halftime and held on to a slim lead
until Rogers put Baylor ahead 56-55 with a put-back basket.
Baylor's Henry Dugat followed with a dunk and Bruce hit a 3-pointer
to put the Bears ahead by six.But the Red Raiders answered with nine straight points that
started with Plefka's 3-pointer. Plefka, who was averaging just 3.7
points per game, hit 7-of-9 shots.Martin Zeno's layup gave the Red Raiders a 66-63 advantage
before Bruce answered with his two 3-pointers.