MILWAUKEE — Olivier-Maxence Prosper scored 24 points and Marquette capitalized on a dominant start from its defense to roll past No. 6 Baylor 96-70 on Tuesday night in the Big 12-Big East Battle.
Marquette (6-2) raced to a 51-25 halftime lead thanks to a 24-0 edge in points off turnovers. Baylor (5-2) already had a season-high 16 turnovers by halftime and finished with 20.
The margin never dropped below 22 points in the second half.
This was the highest-ranked team Marquette has beaten under second-year coach Shaka Smart. Marquette owns a 7-6 record against AP Top 25 teams under Smart.
Kam Jones had 20 points and David Joplin added 19 as Marquette shot 58.3% overall to win its third straight. The Golden Eagles shot 12 of 25 from 3-point range, with Jones going 4 of 7 and Prosper and Joplin each going 3 of 4.
LJ Cryer scored 19 points, Adam Flagler 16 and Keyonte George 12 for Baylor.
Prosper scored 10 points and sank two 3-pointers during a 23-2 run that turned an early 7-2 deficit into a 25-9 advantage. Chase Ross capped the spurt by getting a steal and throwing down a left-handed dunk.
Baylor committed seven turnovers during that run, which lasted a little over five minutes.
Marquette didn’t let up.
Baylor took better care of the ball in the second half, but it didn’t matter much because Marquette didn’t cool off. The Golden Eagles made their first six shots of the half to prevent Baylor from threatening.
Baylor: The Bears shot 48.2% (27 of 56) but had no answers for Marquette’s defense and dug too deep a hole. Baylor rallied from a 25-deficit to force overtime in an NCAA Tournament loss to North Carolina last season, but the Bears never mounted any kind of comeback Tuesday.
Marquette: After losing to Purdue and Mississippi State earlier this season, the Golden Eagles delivered the kind of performance that showed they’re capable of beating anyone. Marquette will try to prove that again when it hosts Wisconsin on Saturday.
BIG 12 VS. BIG EAST
The Big 12-Big East Battle started Tuesday and runs through Sunday. Last season’s Big 12-Big East Battle ended in a 5-5 tie.
Marquette came out of its locker room wearing shirts with No. 24 to honor George Thompson, who died in June of complications from diabetes. Thompson played for Marquette from 1967-69, and he was the school’s career scoring leader for 40 years.
Tuesday would have been Thompson’s 75th birthday. A No. 24 banner with Thompson’s name hangs from the Fiserv Forum rafters.
Baylor: Faces No. 14 Gonzaga on Friday in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
Marquette: Hosts Wisconsin on Saturday.
AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/college-basketball and https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-basketball-poll and https://twitter.com/AP—Top25