It’s becoming something of a formality recently. If Geno Auriemma gets to the national title game, don’t bother betting against him.
Auriemma and the UConn Lady Huskies used a first half run to take control and dominate Louisville 93-60 to claim the program’s eighth national title at the Final Four in New Orleans. The win also moves Auriemma to 8-0 in NCAA championship games.
The 33-point margin of victory was the largest ever in an NCAA Women’s Tournament title game.
Trailing 13-8 with 14:30 left in the half, Morgan Tuck’s lay-up keyed a 21-1 run by UConn (35-4) that gave them firm control of the contest and allowed them to breeze to a 48-29 halftime lead. They extended their lead in the second half, rolling to victory and allowing Auriemma to tie Pat Summitt and Tennessee with eight national titles.
Breanna Stewart, a freshman, was named the Most Outstanding Player of the Final Four, finishing with a game-high 23 points on 9-of-15 shooting, including 3-for-3 from three-point range. She paced four Lady Huskies who finished in double figures. Sara Hammond led the Lady Cardinals (29-9) with 15 points.
Louisville missed out on a chance to be the second program to win both the men’s and women’s national titles in the same year. UConn was the first to do it in 2004.
UConn shot 50-percent from three-point range (13-for-26) and 53-percent (35-of-66) overall. Four players finished with at least five field goals for the Lady Huskies.
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Wednesday’s slate of games had several wild results.
Former Ohio State walk-on turned blogger turned author Mark Titus, who is currently writing for The Ringer, joined Rob Dauster on the latest episode of the CBT Podcast to go over last night’s games. The two also discussed who is the best team in the nation at the moment, as well Frank Mason III’s rap single from several years ago #BIFM
You can subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher and Audioboom
North Carolina’s Roy Williams called fellow Hall of Fame coach Rick Pitino to apologize for a fan’s behavior during Wednesday night’s game in Chapel Hill.
While leaving the floor at halftime, Pitino had to be restrained by members of the Louisville coaching staff and he and a UNC fan exchanged words as he made his way to the locker rom. There’s video of Pitino pointing and shouting at a fan, who reportedly said, “Pitino, you suck!”
“I don’t like that,” Williams said, according to the Charlotte Observer. “I mean we’re in North Carolina. We don’t have to be like everybody else. We can raise Cain. You can boo, but you don’t have to say the stuff that we as coaches have to put up with.”
“I hope that never happens at North Carolina ever again.”
No. 8 North Carolina defeated No. 7 Louisville, 74-63.
STILL TO PLAY
Georgia at Alabama (RPI: 68, KenPom: 61, next four teams), 7:00 p.m.
Nebraska at Michigan State (RPI: 43, KenPom: 55, No. 10 seed), 7:00 p.m.
Towson at UNC Wilmington (RPI: 41, KenPom: 57, No. 12 seed), 7:00 p.m.
Jim Boeheim was on the DP Show on Thursday morning, and he admitted that John Gillon’s 23-foot banked-in three at the buzzer was (shocker!) a lucky shot.
But that wasn’t the most interesting thing that he said on the show.
Patrick asked him about his future in Syracuse, and Boeheim had an interesting response.
“I don’t know what’s etched in stone these days,” Boeheim said. “I really don’t. There’s a plan in place, and we’re going to see what happens. But basically right now, I might be done this year. You just don’t know. You just have to wait until the season’s over.”
Boeheim also responded to a column written by Pete Thamel in SI that speculated on when his time in Syracuse would come to an end, saying the only accurate part of the story was that “he spelled my name right”, before adding that, like anyone else nearing the end of a career, when he has a bad day or a bad week, he thinks about calling it a career.
Creighton announced on Wednesday that injured point guard Mo Watson Jr. was suspended from the program on Feb. 13th for “alleged actions that are contrary to university policies and core values.”
The reason for that suspension, according to a report from the Omaha World-Herald, is that he is being investigated for an alleged sexual assault that happened in Omaha this month.
No charges have been filed and Watson was not arrested as of Wednesday night, according to the paper.
Watson was having an all-american season and leading the nation in assists when he tore his ACL on Jan. 16th in a win at Xavier. He underwent surgery in his hometown of Philadelphia a couple of weeks later, but he has not been a part of a Creighton team activity since his return.
Creighton is 4-5 since Watson’s injury, losing on Wednesday night at home against Providence. They’ll likely make the NCAA tournament still.
Watson is not going to participate in Senior Night festivities in Omaha next week, per the OWH.