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Top-ranked Baylor pulls away from Cyclone women

By CLIFF BRUNT
AP Sports Writer
OKLAHOMA CITY — Kalani Brown had 17 points and seven rebounds to help No. 1 Baylor defeat No. 13 Iowa State 67-49 on Monday night in the Big 12 Tournament championship game.
Brown, a 6-foot-7 senior center, was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player.
Chloe Jackson scored 16 points and Lauren Cox added 14 for the Lady Bears (31-1), who outscored the Cyclones 19-5 in the fourth quarter. It was Baylor’s 10th Big 12 title overall and ninth in the past 11 years.
Alexa Middleton led Iowa State with 18 points while Bridget Carleton, the Big 12 Player of the Year, was held to 13 points on 6-of-16 shooting. Baylor’s DiDi Richards guarded her most of the time.
The Cyclones (25-8) shot just 38 percent from the field.
Baylor led 18-6, but Iowa State closed the first quarter on a 7-0 run. The Cyclones eventually tied the game at 20 and 22, but Baylor finished the half strong to take a 30-25 lead.
Baylor slowed Carleton in the first half, but Middleton kept the Cyclones in it with 11 points before the break.
Iowa State tied the game at 37 in the third quarter, but Baylor again responded and led 48-44 heading into the fourth.
BIG PICTURE
Iowa State: The Cyclones had nothing to lose, and they played like it. They look capable of making a deep run in the NCAA Tournament.
Baylor: The Lady Bears got a good test heading into tournament play. They kept their composure when challenged.
UP NEXT
Iowa State: Will get an at-large berth in the NCAA Tournament.
Baylor: Could enter the NCAA Tournament as the No. 1 overall seed.