Texas racks up over 10,000 fans against Baylor, but takes 63-54 loss in final home game

Emma Hutchinson, Senior Sports Reporter

Texas women’s basketball saw their largest crowd of the season on Monday night against Baylor as 10,763 fans participated in the program’s second 10k for 10k game in school history, racking up $156,000 in donations for the Neighborhood Longhorns Program.  

Although the Longhorns fell to the Bears 63-54, winning or losing was a secondary thought compared to the impact the donors made with their generous contribution. 

“I just appreciate (the fans) for their loyalty and their love for our program,” head coach Vic Shaefer said. “All those folks are really, really special people.”       

After a quick turnaround from its game against No. 16 Oklahoma on Saturday, Texas was off to a sluggish start. The Longhorns stayed vigilant, preying on a sloppy Baylor offense by grabbing rebounds and steals. Texas boasted 23 rebounds in the first half compared to Baylor’s 12, but still trailed the Bears 37-32 going into the second half.        

Struggling to gain the lead, the only thing Texas seemed to be suffering from was its field goal accuracy and consistency. At the half, Baylor made 53.3% of its field goal attempts while Texas made 42.4% of its attempts. The Longhorns’ percentage dwindled as the night ensued, finishing the game with only 35.6% of field goals made.

“It’s very, very disappointing to look around and not recognize the team we had 48 hours ago,” junior guard Taylor Jones said. “It’s eye opening, and it reflects directly on what we need to work on.”        

Jones brought the heat, always being in the right place at the right time. The Dallas product has blocked three or more shots across nine games this season and obtained as many as five blocks in three of those matchups, including Texas’ win against Oklahoma. Jones recorded three blocks and 13 rebounds for the evening.        

Leading the pack on Baylor’s side of things was freshman guard Darianna Littlepage-Buggs. The All-American athlete secured 15 points across the first half alone and went 9-18 in field goals for the night.    

Sophomore guard Rori Harmon had continuous efforts to try and provide leverage to a team with the disadvantage of injured players, putting up 12 points and seven assists. Harmon said she felt that her teammates failed to match her toughness on the court.  

“I look around, and it doesn’t seem like I’m getting the same energy that I’m putting out,” Harmon said. “I’m not perfect at all, but when there’s not enough effort, I take that personally because I feel like you don’t want it anymore.”

Texas left the game on a positive note as its two seniors, guard Anissa Gutierrez and center Femme Masudi, were honored for Senior Night with a tribute video from head coach Vic Schaefer.     

Texas will take on Kansas State in Manhattan, Kansas on Saturday to end its regular schedule and potentially secure a share of the regular season Big 12 title.