The six seed in the West Region, Baylor made 21 more free throw than it did field goals and scored almost half of its 74 points from the charity stripe. The Bears shot 80 percent from the free-throw line, collecting 38 points on 48 trips to the line.
Nebraska was down by 20 points at the 6:37 mark of the second half. Over the next two minutes, the Cornhuskers caught some fire and went on a 13-2 run to cut the Baylor lead down to nine points, And the Huskers’ first-year head coach, Tim Miles, wasn’t even around to see it, having been ejected earlier in the half after receiving a second technical foul.
By that time, though, Nebraska had pretty much run out of gas and gumption. Baylor made 12 more trips to the free throw line in the closing minutes and closed out the Cornhuskers’ 2014 postseason tournament hopes.
Senior forward Cory Jefferson led Baylor in scoring with 16 points. The Bears’ 7-1 sophomore center Isaiah Austin, had 13 and senior two-guard Brady Heslip added 12, 10 of which came from the free-throw line, where the Big 12’s top three-point shooter went 10 for 10. Terran Petteway was high man for Nebraska with 18 points, most of those coming in the second half. Shavon Shields contributed 16 for the Cornhuskers.
Nebraska started out its Big Ten conference schedule going 0-4, but won 10 of its last 13 to finish fourth in the conference and earn its seventh trip ever to the NCAA Tournament. The Cornhuskers have yet to win a game in the Big Dance.
The victory for Baylor was the Bears’ 11th in their last 13 games. At one point this season, Baylor owned a conference record of 2-8 after losing six out of seven games. The Bears are now 25-11 on the year and advance to the third round in the tournament’s West Region on Sunday, when they will face the winner of the game between No. 3 Creighton and the 14-seed Ragin’ Cajuns of Louisiana-Lafayette. That game will be played at the AT&T Center in San Antonio.