Josh Lomers Carries Baylor Load in 76-68 Victory, Sending Bears to Sweet 16
Many basketball fans may recognize some of coach Scott Drew’s Baylor basketball players, such as LaceDarius Dunn, Tweety Carter, Ekpe Udoh, or Quincy Acy.
But senior big man Josh Lomers stole the show on Saturday afternoon against Old Dominion, helping to carry the load for his team while constantly cleaning up under the glass as Baylor heads to the Sweet 16 following a 76-68 victory.
Lomers, one of two seniors on this year’s Baylor squad along with Carter, scored 14 points and pulled down eight rebounds (along with four steals and three blocks) before fouling out of the game to a standing ovation by the green and gold supporters.
"We always looked at him [Lomers] as our rock down low," Baylor's senior guard Carter told the Bears' official athletic site.
"You know, he holds us together, believe it or not. He comes out and play whatever minutes he’s got, he’s going to come out and play. That’s what I love about him. He always comes out and plays hard. Nothing bothers him. And him being as calm as he is has allowed us to be calm."
Teammate Dunn echoed Carter’s praise of Lomers.
“Josh means a lot to the team, you know. Just being the monster that he is, and just bringing things to the team. I think today he just came out with something else on his mind. You know, he just did a great job, getting all the offensive rebounds and the putback, and not only that, but finishing with the fouls when all the pushing was going on. But I think he came out and contributed a lot to the team today.”
Baylor's Josh Lomers had three blocks in the Bears' win over Old Dominion.
Here's when those blocks took place in Saturday's showdown:
1. With 9:09 remaining in the first half, Lomers swatted away a layup attempt by Old Dominion's Marsharee Neely, leading to a defensive rebound by teammate Anthony Jones with the Bears leading 25-13.
2. With 9:06 remaining in the second half, Lomers blocked another layup attempt by Neely with the Bears behind 53-52.
3. With 5:45 left in regulation, Lomers blocked a layup attempt by Old Dominion's Frank Hassell with the score tied at 58.
Baylor's Josh Lomers also had eight huge boards in the Bears win over Old Dominion, including six offensive rebounds.
Here's when Lomers pulled down those big boards in the BU win:
1. With 19:02 left in the first half, Lomers pulled down a defensive rebound with the Bears on top 3-1, leading to a jumper by teammate Tweety Carter to give Baylor a five-point lead.
2. With 8:12 remaining in the first half, Lomers grabbed his first offensive rebound before putting it back up and in for a 27-13 Baylor lead.
3. Lomers was a monster in the second half. With 12:06 left in the game, the seven-foot senior pulled down an offensive rebound before making a layup to tie the game at 49 (he then drained the free throw to complete the traditional three-point play and give the Bears the lead).
4. With 11:11 left in the second half, Lomers grabbed another offensive rebound, once again putting it back up and in for a 52-21 Baylor lead.
5. With 6:45 remaining in the second half, Lomers pulled down a monster rebound before taking it up for an attempted layup.
6. After missing his layup attempt, Lomers grabbed another offensive board with 6:42 remaining and the Bears on top by one, 56-55.
7. With 6:07 left in regulation, Lomers pulled down his final offensive rebound of the day before making a layup to deadlock the game at 58-58.
8. With 4:01 remaining in the game, Lomers grabbed his second defensive rebound of the game before passing the ball to Carter, leading to a successful three-pointer by LaceDarius Dunn and a 68-62 Baylor lead.
Senior big man Josh Lomers also had a big night defensively in the steals department, successfully sneaking in for a swipe four times against Old Dominion.
Here's when Lomers' steals occurred:
1. Lomers' first steal of the game came with 18:38 remaining in the first half, leading to a three-pointer by Tweety Carter and an 8-1 Baylor lead.
2. Lomers got another steal just moments later, taking away a pass at the 18:02 mark of the first half before passing the ball to Carter, who assisted LaceDarius Dunn for a dunk and a 10-1 BU lead.
3. With 10:47 left in the second half of play, Lomers picked up his third steal of the game with the Bears leading by a slim margin, 52-51.
4. Lomers got his final steal of the game with 2:21 remaining in regulation and Baylor holding onto a 70-62 lead.
On the night, Josh Lomers matched a career high in scoring while garnering 14 points en route to a Baylor victory over Old Dominion.
I won't break down every single time Lomers scored in the Bears victory to send Scott Drew's green and gold team to the Sweet 16, but let me just say this: Lomers was clutch for Baylor against Old Dominion, and in my opinion he was the game's MVP...
With a monster night by senior big man Josh Lomers, along with major contributions from his Baylor teammates, Scott Drew and the Bears are heading to their first ever Sweet 16.
The beauty of it all is that next weekend's matchup will be taking place just a short drive from Waco's beautiful BU campus, giving the Bears a major boost of confidence heading into their Sweet 16 showdown with Saint Mary's.
Believe it or not, a Baylor win next weekend in Houston will be sending the Bears to the Elite Eight, and maybe even the Final Four...
Denton Ramsey may be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org