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HTC Center, Conway, South Carolina Attendance: 1,921
Path gets tougher for No. 24 Baylor; Coastal Carolina looms
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Defense was the difference Thursday for No. 24 Baylor in the quarterfinals of the Myrtle Beach Invitational, but the Bears will have to be even better when they battle host Coastal Carolina on Friday in the semifinals in Conway, S.C.
Jared Butler led the way for the Bears as he has in all four of Baylor's games this season, scoring 19 points in the 76-53 win over Ohio. MaCio Teague hit for 17 points, and Freddie Gillespie gave the Bears some punch in the lane with 10 points and 11 rebounds in the win.
But the work on the defensive end against the Bobcats was the real key. Baylor (3-1) held the Bobcats to just 35.8 percent shooting while earning a 42-32 edge on the glass and pestering Ohio to 19 turnovers.
"Our defensive field goal percentage was outstanding," Baylor coach Scott Drew said. "Our bigs did a good job with ball screen defense. I was definitely pleased with how we finished the first and second halves."
After trailing by as many as 18 points in the second half, Ohio clawed back to within 57-48 with 8:19 to play. Then Baylor ran off the next 13 points to put away the Bobcats, who missed seven of their eight shots and committed three turnovers in that pivotal stretch.
Teague said that "any adversity" the team goes through "is good and we're learning, and like (coach Drew) said, it's early in the year so it's really good for us to learn now. ... We're still developing chemistry with guys."
In the late quarterfinal, Coastal Carolina's Keishawn Brewton scored a game-high 22 points and Ebrima Dibba added a career-high 19 points as the Chanticleers pulled away for a 79-57 win over previously unbeaten Utah.
Brewton had 15 of his points in the second half, and Jones, who played sparingly in the first half after picking up two quick fouls, had 13 of his points after the intermission.
The win was Coastal Carolina's first-ever over a Pac-12 team (1-1), a Utah squad that had wins over Nevada and Minnesota in this early season. The Chanticleers improved to 3-2.
"This was a huge win for Coastal Carolina. Our defense did a great job and the offense was wonderful," Chanticleers coach Cliff Ellis said. "This was one of the best games Dibba has played for us, on both sides of the floor. We weren't expected to win, but we did, and now we will face a nationally ranked Baylor team."
Coastal Carolina also got double-figure scoring from Devante Jones and Garrick Green, who added 16 and 12 points, respectively.
Playing on their home court, Coastal Carolina shot 45.3 percent and canned 11 3-pointers, many while pulling away midway through the second half via a 26-9 run.
"It was one of those games that was a statement win for us," Ellis said. "At the same point in time, we know we've got 80 more minutes of basketball. The big test now is we have to put this one behind us."
--Field Level Media
Updated November 22, 2019