8:00 PM ET, February 9, 2005
NORMAN, Okla. (AP) -- Sophia Young was at the right place at the right time, and Baylor (No. 8 ESPN/USA Today, No. 7 AP) withstood another scare.The junior forward from the West Indies hit a jumper from just inside the 3-point line with less than one second left to give Baylor a 73-72 victory over Oklahoma on Wednesday night.The Bears took possession after a driving layup by Oklahoma's Dionnah Jackson with 11.5 seconds left. Chelsea Whitaker drove to the left baseline and kicked it out to Young, whose jumper bounced in with 0.4 seconds remaining."I knew that once she passed it to me, I had to shoot it," Young said. "I thought the clock had expired."After a timeout, Oklahoma ran a play but couldn't get a shot off following a long inbounds pass into traffic.Young, who hasn't tried a 3-pointer all season and missed her only attempt last season, said she had been working on her long-range jumpers and joked that she could have taken the shot from a step further back."I was almost at the 3-point line," Young said. "I could have shot the three."Young finished with 21 points to lead the Bears (18-3, 8-2 Big 12), Emily Niemann added 15 points, Steffanie Blackmon scored 11 and Chameka Scott 10.Whitaker, who'd had five turnovers and no assists in the second half, found herself with the ball on the final possession."I know it sounds crazy, but the more hectic the game, the more comfortable I am," " Whitaker said. "I was trying to drive in there and make something happen and they stopped me. I turned around and saw Sophia and she is big time and able to hit those shots."Jackson scored 26 of her 30 points in the second half as she nearly led Oklahoma back for a needed victory. She made nine of 12 shots after halftime and scored all but nine of Oklahoma's 35 second-half points."They were having trouble staying in front of her all night long," Oklahoma coach Sherri Coale said. "It's hard to guard her with one guy."Leah Rush had 12 points and reserve Antoinette Wadsworth finished with 10 for Oklahoma (12-9, 4-6), which has lost six games to ranked opponents. The Sooners also lost an overtime game to No. 15 Texas last month after leading by as many as 14 points."At some point, somewhere, sometime we're going to get a break," Coale said. "And when we do, we're going to make the best of it."The Sooners rallied back from a six-point halftime deficit to tie the game at 56 after back-to-back baskets by Wadsworth. But Niemann hit a 3-pointer from the right side and Young scored inside to give Baylor a 61-56 lead.Jackson drove for a basket to bring Oklahoma back within two points, and Niemann faked another 3-pointer before stepping in for a jumper to start a 6-0 run that extended Baylor's lead to 69-61.Jackson pushed back with a 3-pointer and two free throws to bring Oklahoma back within three. Niemann hit two free throws, but Jackson responded with two of her own before bringing the Sooners within a point with a driving layup with 51.7 seconds left.Scott lost the ball out of bounds on the left wing to set up Oklahoma's final possession, and Jackson's driving layup rolled all the way around the rim and fell in to give the Sooners their only lead of the second half at 72-71.But Baylor, which won with 0.2 seconds on the clock Jan. 29 at Oklahoma State, pulled off another last-second miracle. Jackson said Oklahoma was in position for the stop."We did all the right things," Jackson said. "She just hit the shot."
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