Griner leads No. 6 Baylor to 68-55 win over BC

AP Basketball Writer

NEW YORK (AP) Brittney Griner scored 25 points and No. 6 Baylor beat Boston College 68-55 on Sunday in the first game of the Maggie Dixon Classic at Madison Square Garden.

Morghan Medlock added 12 points for the Bears (8-1), who have won eight straight since losing to Tennessee in the season opener.

Stefanie Murphy scored 18 and Mickel Picco added 10 to lead Boston College (5-5).

Fourth-ranked Tennessee played Rutgers in the second game of the doubleheader. All four teams stood together on the court between the games to honor Dixon.

With Baylor leading 29-25 early in the second half, Griner took over. She scored 10 points during a 14-4 spurt. The 6-foot-8 freshman started the spurt with a nifty layup. A few putbacks and turnaround jumpers by Griner during the run gave Baylor a 43-29 lead midway through the second half.

Boston College was able to close to 58-48, but Jordan Madden hit a jumper just as the shot clock ran out and the Eagles could get no closer.

Every time Griner touched the ball their was a buzz in the crowd, which included New York Liberty president Carol Blazejowski and coach Anne Donovan. Griner, who became the seventh women’s player to dunk in a game earlier this season said Saturday that she knows people expect her to dunk all the time. She had one chance in the game with 30 seconds left, but her hand was just underneath the rim when she put it in.

The Bears took a 19-4 lead in the first 7 minutes, hitting nine of their first 11 shots. Griner had six points in the spurt.

Boston College looked nervous, missing open shots and turning the ball over. The Eagles finally got on track behind Murphy, who scored six straight points as Boston College closed to 24-15. The Eagles trailed by 10 at halftime in the first meeting between the schools.

This was the fourth Maggie Dixon Classic in honor of the former Army coach, who died on April 6, 2006, of arrhythmia, likely caused by an enlarged heart. The inaugural Maggie Dixon Classic was held at Army in 2006 – a men’s and women’s doubleheader. The Pittsburgh men, coached by Maggie’s brother Jamie, beat Western Michigan, while Ohio State routed Army. The last three have been played at Madison Square Garden as women’s doubleheaders.

Updated December 13, 2009