Adam Flagler scored a season-best 22 points, and No. 2 Baylor showed major signs of rust from its 21-day layoff before emerging to post a 77-72 victory over Iowa State in Big 12 play Tuesday night at Waco, Texas.
Jared Butler added 18 points as Baylor set a school standard by opening the season with its 18th straight victory. The Bears (10-0 Big 12) hadn't played since beating Texas on Feb. 2 due to a coronavirus outbreak that led to six consecutive postponed games.
MaCio Teague scored 14 points, and Mark Vital matched his season best of 15 rebounds for Baylor, which never led in the game's first 35 1/2 minutes.
Tyler Harris scored a season-best 22 points and made five 3-pointers and Rasir Bolton recorded 21 points, eight rebounds and six assists for Iowa State (2-17, 0-14), which lost its 13th straight game.
Jalen Coleman-Lands added 13 points for Iowa State, which shot 48.3 percent from the field. Baylor, which started 17-0 in 2011-12, shot 43.5 percent from the field.
The Bears were without key reserve Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua and seldom-used Mark Paterson and Jordan Turner due to COVID-19 protocols.
Baylor recovered from a 17-point first-half deficit to move within 65-64 on Vital's basket with 5:02 left. Teague hit two free throws with 4:26 left to give Baylor its first lead.
Flagler added two free throws to give the Bears a three-point edge. Coleman-Lands drilled a 3-pointer to tie the score at 68 before Teague drove for a hoop to give Baylor a two-point lead with 2:28 left.
Butler's basket elevated the Bears' lead to 72-68 with 38.5 seconds left.
Iowa State later moved within 75-72 on Harris' basket with 3.6 seconds left before Butler made two free throws to seal it with 3.1 seconds remaining.
Harris was 4 of 5 from 3-point range while scoring 14 first-half points and Bolton added 12 as the Cyclones held a 37-32 halftime lead.
The Cyclones took advantage of Baylor's rust while taking an 18-6 lead before the game was seven minutes old.
Harris' final first-half 3-pointer gave Iowa State a 32-15 advantage with 6:24 left before the Bears came out of hibernation and scored nine straight points.
--Field Level Media