OKLAHOMA CITY — No. 19 Iowa State gave top-ranked Baylor its best shot in the Big 12 women’s basketball tournament championship game Monday night at Chesapeake Energy Arena, but the Bears were too good, winning, 67-49.
Iowa State (25-8) tied the game up, 41-41, on a jumper from Big 12 Player of the Year Bridget Carleton with 3:11 left in the third quarter, but never took the lead in a game that featured five ties.
Baylor (31-1) pulled away after that last tie, outscoring the Cyclones 19-5 in the fourth quarter.
“It’s hard to beat a team three times, especially a team like Iowa State,” Baylor forward Lauren Cox said on FS1.
The 6-foot-4 Cox finished with 14 points and eight rebounds. Six-foot-7 center Kalani Brown — the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player — had 17 points and seven rebounds, and guard Chloe Jackson had 16 points.
Baylor out-rebounded Iowa State 38 to 28 and the Bears didn’t make a 3-point shot.
ISU only had five assists on 20 field goals.
Carleton led ISU with six rebounds to go with 13 points. Senior guard Alexa Middleton led the Cyclones with 18 points. The two were named to the all-tournament team.
The Bears were in the championship game for the ninth straight season, winning eight.
“I’m emotional,” Baylor Coach Kim Mulkey said on FS1. “I don’t think people realize what we’ve done at Baylor. I think some people take it for granted.”
Iowa State had reached the Big 12 title game for the first time since 2013.
The NCAA Tournament bracket is revealed next Monday, and ESPN currently projects the Cyclones as a 4-seed.