Juicy Landrum scored 20 points with four 3-pointers and No. 1 overall seed Baylor advanced to the women’s NCAA Sweet 16 for the 11th season in a row with a 102-63 win over California on Monday night.
The Big 12 champion Lady Bears (33-1) were trailing late in the first quarter before a 25-2 run turned their third NCAA meeting in six seasons against Cal into yet another lopsided victory. They have a 25-game winning streak.
Chloe Jackson, the first graduate transfer to play for Baylor, scored eight of her 18 points in that big run and finished eight-of-12 shooting. Freshman NaLyssa Smith had 13 points and Lauren Cox had 10 on 5-of-6 shooting.
Cal (20-13) led 16-14 after All-Pac-12 center Kristine Anigwe made a jumper, her only made field goal of the first half, with 1:14 left in the first quarter. Baylor then scored 15 points in a row to start the bigger game-turning spurt.
Anigwe finished with 13 points on 4-of-17 shooting and five rebounds. It was the first time the 6-foot-4 senior didn’t have a double-double — she had been the only player, men or women, with a double-double in every game this season until then.
Kianna Smith led Cal with 18 points. Recee Caldwell, a grad transfer who before going to UCLA and then Texas Tech was verbally committed to Baylor, scored 12 points.
Kalani Brown, Baylor’s 6-7 senior playing her final game in the Ferrell Center, finished with eight points, eight rebounds and three assists in the matchup of two of the nation’s best centers. Brown had a putback basket for the first basket of the game with Anigwe on her back and another defender fronting her.
When Baylor was making its big run in the second quarter, Brown had the ball in the lane when she twisted and passed over Anigwe’s shoulder to DiDi Richards flashing behind her for a wide-open layup that made it 35-18.
Baylor led 46-27 at the half after Landrum hit a buzzer-beating 3.
California: It was the third time in six seasons the Golden Bears won a first-round game in Waco and then had to face Baylor. They lost by 19 points in 2014 and fell by 40 two years ago. … Anigwe had two fouls in the game’s first 6 1/2 minutes, which changed how aggressive she could be — at least for a few minutes. She had two more fouls in a 22-second span early in the third quarter and came out of the game briefly, but the game was already lopsided by then.
Baylor: The Lady Bears won their 16th consecutive NCAA Tournament game at home, all of them pretty much by lopsided margins. They finished 17-0 at home this season, and have won 39 in a row overall in Waco. … Baylor needs two more wins to get to its first NCAA Final Four since their undefeated 40-0 national championship in 2012.
Baylor is off the Greensboro for a Sweet 16 matchup Saturday against SEC team South Carolina, which the Lady Bears beat by 25 points on the road earlier season.