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Day 4 of the 2019 women’s NCAA tournament is complete, and we’re compiling some of the top results, sights and sounds of the day.
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Baylor, Missouri State, NC State, Notre Dame, Oregon State, South Dakota State and UCLA each won Monday to advance to the Sweet 16.
And be sure to check out our additional coverage from Monday:
+ Transition game leads Notre Dame to 10th consecutive Sweet 16
No. 11 Missouri State 69, No. 3 Iowa State 60
The Lady Bears hadn’t won an NCAA tournament game since 2001, when they went to the Final Four behind Jackie Stiles. Now she’s an assistant coach to Kellie Harper, and they’re headed to the Sweet 16 — and a double-digit seed has reached the regional semifinals for the third straight year.
The Lady Bears upset Drake in the Missouri Valley tournament on March 17 and looked like a potentially dangerous No. 11 seed. That proved to be true. They upset No. 6 seed DePaul on Friday. Then they defied Iowa State’s “Hilton Magic” and knocked off the Cyclones in Hilton Coliseum. Alexa Willard led Missouri State with 17 points, and nine Lady Bears scored.
It has been a huge comeback season for Missouri State, which lost seven of its first eight games.
Admittedly, the Cyclones also hurt themselves. Iowa State is perennially one of the best 3-point-shooting teams in the country, but the Cyclones were 2-of-17 from behind the arc on Monday. Senior Bridget Carleton, the Big 12 player of the year, led the Cyclones with 31 points. That left her just seven shy of tying the Iowa State career scoring mark of 2,149, held by Angie Welle, who finished her career with an NCAA tournament second-round loss at home, too, back in 2002. — Mechelle Voepel
I loved how stoic @MSULadyBears coach Kellie Harper looked … until the buzzer sounded, and then you saw how much this meant to her.
— Mechelle Voepel (@MechelleV) March 26, 2019
— MSU Lady Bears (@MSULadyBears) March 26, 2019
Juicy Landrum drains a shot at the buzzer from behind the arc to give Baylor a 46-27 lead going into the half.
No. 1 Baylor 102, No. 9 Cal 63
Baylor’s size was too much for Cal’s Kristine Anigwe to handle by herself. The rest of the Lady Bears were simply too much — period.
Baylor devastated Cal with a 25-2 second-quarter run, largely fueled by its guards.
The pivotal run began late in the first with Baylor trailing 16-14. Point guard Chloe Jackson had 10 points in the stretch, and Didi Richards added five. The Lady Bears shot 64 percent in the second quarter and led 46-27 at the half.
Baylor’s 6-foot-7 Kalani Brown (eight points) and 6-foot-4 Lauren Cox (10 points, five assists) didn’t carry the offense but made life difficult for the 6-foot-4 Anigwe. The Cal All-American picked up two early fouls and was ineffective from that point. She missed 10 of her first 11 shots, and her 33-game double-double streak, the second-longest in NCAA history, came to an end. She finished with 13 points and five rebounds in her final game, and she managed to set the Cal single-season scoring record before her night was finished.
Baylor led the nation in field goal percentage and blocks per game this season and held Cal to 41.5 percent shooting. The Lady Bears shot 54.7 percent and assisted on 25 of their 41 field goals. — Charlie Creme
No. 6 South Dakota State 75, No. 3 Syracuse 64
Underdogs aren’t supposed to be the better team in crunch time, especially when they are playing on the road in the NCAA tournament, and especially when their best player is having an off night.
South Dakota State threw that convention out the windows of the Carrier Dome, upsetting Syracuse and advancing to the program’s first Sweet 16.
Madison Guebert, the team’s second-leading scorer, was the Jackrabbit who came up big. With South Dakota State trailing 62-61 and 3 minutes, 42 seconds left, Guebert made consecutive 3-pointers. The Jackrabbits’ defense also went to another level, holding Syracuse scoreless for more than three minutes as South Dakota State ended the game on a 14-2 run.
Guebert finished with a game-high 20 points. Macy Miller, the Jackrabbits’ leading scorer, had only 11 points on 3-of-9 shooting, but added 10 rebounds and 5 assists, including two on Guebert’s key shots.
Syracuse, which received its highest seed ever, has failed to make the Sweet 16 in three consecutive seasons following a trip to the national title game in 2016. — Charlie Creme
Channise Lewis pokes the ball out of Lindsey Corsaro’s hands and, with 4.7 seconds remaining in the third quarter, drives the court and puts it home for Maryland to increase its lead to 71-66.
No. 6 UCLA 85, No. 3 Maryland 80
When UCLA fell in overtime to Oregon in the Pac-12 tournament semifinals, Bruins coach Cori Close didn’t try to hold back her emotion. She hurt for her players, but she was also sure they could go on an NCAA tournament run.
After beating Tennessee in the first round Saturday, the Bruins knocked off the host Terps on Monday to advance to their fourth consecutive Sweet 16. UCLA lost senior standouts Jordin Canada and Monique Billings to the WNBA from last season’s Elite Eight team, and it took time this season to jell. But it was clear by the league tournament that the Bruins had done that. Michaela Onyenwere led UCLA with 30 points, adding eight rebounds. Japreece Dean had 22 points and five assists, and Kennedy Burke — who took over late in the Tennessee game — had 19 points and 11 rebounds.
Next up, UCLA will try to do something the program hasn’t done: beat UConn, the No. 2 seed in the Albany Regional. The Huskies lead the series 5-0, including 86-71 in the 2017 Sweet 16 and 78-60 last season at UCLA.
It was a tough finish for Maryland, which also lost in the Big Ten tournament final, to Iowa. The good news for the Terps, though, is they bring all five starters back next season. — Mechelle Voepel
— UCLA W. Basketball (@UCLAWBB) March 26, 2019
Arike Ogunbowale drains a jumper to surpass 2,500 points for her career, becoming the first woman at Notre Dame to do so.
No. 1 Notre Dame 91, No. 9 Michigan State 63
Jackie Young nearly had a triple-double, and four Notre Dame starters scored at least 14 points, as the Irish continue to dominate. Notre Dame, which has beaten its past 11 opponents by an average of 29.8 points per game, advances to the Sweet 16 for the 10th consecutive season.
Young got Notre Dame started with a series of aggressive drives and offensive rebounds early. Then an 18-1 Irish run in the middle of the second quarter effectively put away the Spartans. Michigan State suffered the worst NCAA tournament loss in school history.
Arike Ogunbowale led the Irish with 23 points. Young had 21 points, 11 rebounds (six offensive) and 7 assists. Jessica Shepard had 19 points and 9 rebounds, and Brianna Turner finished with 14 points, 11 rebounds and 4 blocks. Turner’s 10th rebound moved her past Irish legend Ruth Riley for tops on the program’s all-time list. — Charlie Creme
So proud of @WolfpackWes @PackWomensBball for B2B trips to #Sweet16! Wes has done a coach of the year job! Survived 4 ACL injuries, 3 to starters, never complained, never used it as an excuse, kept finding a way! #nextplayereveryplayer ready & prepared! On to Greensboro!
— Debbie Antonelli (@debbieantonelli) March 26, 2019
No. 3 NC State 72, No. 6 Kentucky 57
Wolfpack coach Wes Moore is a no-excuses kind of guy. Graduation losses from last season? Losing four players to knee injuries, including the team’s leading scorer at the time, this season? That was no reason, in Moore’s mind, for NC State to change its goal of getting back to the Sweet 16.
NC State did that Monday, pulling away from Kentucky by outscoring the Wildcats 19-9 in the fourth quarter. The Wolfpack held Kentucky to 31.9 percent shooting and outrebounded the Wildcats 50-31. Three NC State players had double-doubles, led by Kiara Leslie with 26 points and 10 rebounds. Elissa Cunane had 13 points and 15 rebounds and DD Rodgers 11 and 11.
Wolfpack point guard Kaila Ealey injured her knee before the season and had to sit out. Then guard Grace Hunter hurt her knee against Duke on Jan. 3 and was sidelined the rest of the season; she was averaging 14.6 points and 6.9 rebounds at the time. Then the Wolfpack lost guard Armani Hawkins against Pittsburgh on Jan. 10 and forward Erika Cassell against Florida State on Feb. 7, also both to knee injuries that took them out the rest of the season.
But the Wolfpack have soldiered on, and now they’ll make the short trip back to the same place they just played the ACC tournament: Greensboro Coliseum. — Mechelle Voepel
After an offensive rebound, NC State’s Aislinn Konig finds Kai Crutchfield in the corner for a big 3-pointer, putting the Wolfpack up 14.
No. 4 Oregon State 76, No. 5 Gonzaga 70
Oregon State has made a habit of playing close games. That practice paid off again Monday as the Beavers edged Gonzaga to advance to their fourth straight Sweet 16.
In a game that featured 10 ties and nine lead changes, it came down to plays by Oregon State’s Mikayla Pivec and Taya Corosdale. With the score knotted at 59, Pivec, who made the key steal in the overtime win over Boise State in the first round, completed a three-point play with a driving left-handed layup to give the Beavers the lead with 2:16 left. Corosdale made a 3-point shot on an assist from Destiny Slocumb on the Beavers’ next possession, and the lead was 67-61. The Zags wouldn’t go away, but never got within one score again.
Pivec led Oregon State with 19 points, 11 rebounds and six assists.
Gonzaga was trying to make a fifth Sweet 16 in the past 10 years. But the Zags were playing without point guard Laura Stockton and second-leading scorer Jill Townsend, who were each injured in the WCC tournament semifinals. Gonzaga was led by senior Zykera Rice with 20 points. — Charlie Creme
Mikayla Pivec finds Madison Washington right in the paint for the open layup.
No. 2 Stanford 72, No. 7 BYU 63
Coach Tara VanDerveer won’t be thrilled with some late turnovers that made the game closer. But the bottom line is that the Cardinal are moving on and finished a strong opening-rounds performance by the Pac-12, which has five teams in the Sweet 16.
According to ESPN Stats & Info, the Pac-12’s 11-1 record — only Cal lost, in the second round to Baylor — is the second-best by a conference that played at least 10 early-round games. The best was the SEC, which went 13-1 in 1997 and put six teams in the Sweet 16.
Senior forward Alanna Smith led the Cardinal with 23 points and 14 rebounds. Stanford, the Pac-12 tournament champion, will take on Cinderella No. 11 seed Missouri State in the Chicago Regional. The last time Stanford won an NCAA title, in 1992, Missouri State was also in the Final Four, losing in the semifinals to Western Kentucky. — Mechelle Voepel
DiJonai Carrington drains a jumper just before the halftime buzzer to give Stanford a 31-29 lead going into the locker room.
What you missed Sunday
+ A triple-double for Ionescu, a Sweet 16 for Oregon
+ UConn tested, but survives Buffalo
+ Megan Gustafson double-double delivers Iowa to Sweet 16
+ Senior trio helps send Louisville to Sweet 16