LAWRENCE, Kan. -- Kansas had put together a nice little run, on the cusp of its first four-game conference winning streak in nine years.
They Jayhawks caught a break, too, not having to face Danielle Wilson, who was back in Waco nursing a sore knee.
Still, a rout over a top 5 team? That would have been hard to predict.
Danielle McCray scored a career-high 35 points, including seven 3-pointers, and Kansas took advantage of Wilson's absence to pull off a surprising 69-45 rout over Baylor (No. 6 ESPN/USA Today, No. 5 AP) on Wednesday night.
"No, you don't expect anything like that," Kansas coach Bonnie Henrickson said.
Kansas (17-11, 6-9) knew what to expect with Wilson. She's Baylor's top scorer, rebounding, leading shot blocker. Without her, the Jayhawks had to hit the film room, try to glean as much from one half -- the one Wilson missed after getting hurt -- to figure out how the Bears might play.
They apparently figured it out.
Dominating from the start, Kansas opened with a 16-4 run, pushed the lead to 25 by halftime and barely let up, giving the seniors perhaps the biggest victory over their careers in their final home game.
The Jayhawks held Baylor to a season-low in points, outscored the Bears 32-16 inside and outrebounded the nation's fifth-best rebounding team by two. Krysten Boogaard added 18 points and 11 rebounds for Kansas, which had its largest margin of victory in a Big 12 game since beating Baylor by 30 in 1997.
"It was a really exciting game to play in," said Boogaard, who was 7-for-12 from the floor. "We were really hyped up going into the game. We knew Baylor was a great team, so we knew we had to step up and play well."
Baylor (23-5, 11-4) simply seemed disoriented without Wilson.
The Bears got off to a miserable start and never really recovered, falling behind by as much as 30. The Bears shot 26 percent, including 1-of-9 from 3-point range, and had just one player in double figures -- Ashley Field with 11 -- to see its 10-game winning streak against Kansas end.
"I don't want to make any excuse about us not having Danielle Wilson," Baylor coach Kim Mulkey said. "It's obvious she's a very big part of our team. Our post defense and our defense from some of our players on McCray was pitiful."
Wilson, who averages 15.1 points and 9.6 rebounds, had to be carried off the court after crumpling to the floor early in the first half against Texas on Saturday. The junior post didn't make the trip to Lawrence, staying in Waco so she could rehabilitate her knee with the hopes of playing again this season.
Baylor didn't seem to know what to do without her.
Playing flat and tentative, the Bears were completely out of sorts offensively in the first half without Wilson, firing up airballs, making silly mistakes like stepping out of bounds or dribbling the ball their own feet. Baylor opened the game with six straight missed shots and kept clanging from there, closing the first half with a nearly six-minute scoreless streak to shoot 5-of-27 for a season-low 17 points.
"I'm disappointed that a couple of our players did not put forth the energy when the game started," Mulkey said. "It takes energy and effort to win on the road and I didn't we got it from some of our players when the game starter."
It wasn't just on offense.
Wilson is Baylor's leading shot blocker, one of the best in the history of the Big 12, so her absence hurt on the defensive end as well.
The Jayhawks got into the lane seemingly whenever they wanted, shooting 15-of-28 in the first half, including 5-of-7 from beyond the 3-point arc. Baylor had no one to stop Boogaard, who overpowered smaller defenders inside for 11 points and eight rebounds by halftime.
The Bears had even more trouble with McCray.
Kansas' leading scorer opened the game with a 3-pointer and kept firing, getting three more and 14 points in the first 10 minutes. She finished the first half 5-for-6 from beyond the arc and had 23 points, capping the show with a nifty flip pass to Sade Morris for a jumper at the buzzer that put Kansas up 42-17.
McCray finished 11-for-21 from the field, including 7-of-10 from beyond the arc, adding in eight rebounds and three assists.
"I had the hot hand tonight and everything was going in," McCray said. "I wasn't going to stop shooting it."