Wojcik era off to big start
WACO, Texas — New coach Doug Wojcik already has his own signature victory at the College of Charleston.
Willis Hall scored 12 points, including six in a row to break the final tie, and the Cougars won 63-59 Saturday night at 24th-ranked Baylor, which hadn’t lost a home game against a non-conference opponent in nearly four years.
“Great team win for us. Our guys have really stepped up,” said Wojcik, the former Tulsa coach who because Charleston’s coach in April.
“When it comes to our scouting report, (Baylor) did everything we scouted them,” said post player Adjehi Baru, who had 15 rebounds.
“We just played defense. I give them credit because they played really hard, too, but we put it on tonight. We played defense as a whole team.”
Charleston (3-2) won against a Top 25 team for the first time since an overtime home victory over No. 9 North Carolina on Jan. 4, 2010. The Cougars’ only other road win against a ranked team was at Georgia Tech in January 1993.
Hall finished with 12 points, including 8 of 10 free throws. The last came with 2.4 seconds left after grabbing a rebound after Baylor missed consecutive shots.
“We knew it was going to be a good game. We were hoping we would pull it out obviously, but I think we’ll learn from it, we’ll be a better team because of it,” Baylor coach Scott Drew said.
“It just hurts you the rest of the year because a lot of people coin it as a bad loss even though they’re a good team.”
Pierre Jackson had 21 points with five assists and five rebounds to lead Baylor (4-2), which had won 29 consecutive home games against non-conference teams since an 85-84 loss to South Carolina on Jan. 2, 2009.
Jackson, the preseason Big 12 player of the year, missed his last four shots after making a layup and then a 3-pointer in a 45-second span to tie the game at 55 with 3:53 left.
But Hall snapped that tie with two free throws with 3:22 left, putting the Cougars ahead to stay six days after they beat Boston College.
“Willis Hall is a winner, a blue-collar guy who gets a lot of things done,” Wojcik said. “Two games in a row, he kind of seals it for us at the end.”