WACO, Texas (AP) — Sherri Coale knows what it's like to be down by a bunch and rally for a win. Her Oklahoma Sooners almost pulled off a miraculous comeback against Baylor before falling short.
"We were down at Cal by 26 and came back and won by 10 or something. That was crazy," the Oklahoma coach said. "Then against West Virginia last year in the Big 12 tournament, we were down 22" and scratched out a 65-64 win.
Oklahoma (17-12, 8-8 Big 12) trailed by 32 with 15:12 left in the game and twice pulled to within 6 before falling 96-89 to No. 6 Baylor on Monday night. The Sooners could have pulled even closer had Aaryn Ellenberg's 3-point attempt with 29 seconds to play not bounced off the back of the rim and fallen into the hands of Baylor's Nina Davis.
Ellenberg "had a really deep 3 there," Coale said. "She had a good look at it. I followed that one all the way in. That was close. It was a good look."
Ellenberg, who finished with 29 points, was playing her first game since suffering a concussion against Oklahoma State on Feb. 16. She was 9-of-24 from the field and made eight of her nine free throw attempts.
"Early in the game, you could tell she hadn't done anything in seven days except sit in a dark corner of a room and try to get well," Coale said. "But she played her way out of it and was fantastic."
Odyssey Sims scored 38 points and Nina Davis added 28 points and 14 rebounds to lead Baylor (25-3, 15-1).
"People forget, Oklahoma was picked to win (the Big 12)" Baylor coach Kim Mulkey said. "That team we played tonight is good. That team is good."
Baylor took a 71-39 advantage on a layup by Makenzie Robertson with 15:12 to play before Oklahoma rallied scoring 17 of the next 21 points. Ellenberg scored seven during the streak and Williams had back-to-back layups, and the Sooners pulled to within 75-56 with 10:15 to play. The Sooners then got the lead down to 12, with Kornet hitting a 3 and Ellenberg following with two free throws and a steal and jumper. Baylor was up 78-66 with 7:33 to play.
Oklahoma made one final push to get it within six. Mulkey said that Oklahoma's second half rally began when she pulled starting post player Sune Agbuke less than five minutes into the second half due to a sore Achilles.