NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Dre’una Edwards hit a 3-pointer from the top of the key with 4.2 seconds left, and the Kentucky Wildcats rallied from 15 points down to upset top-ranked South Carolina 64-62 on Sunday to win their first Southeastern Conference women’s tournament championship since 1982.
Kentucky hadn’t even reached this game since 2014. These seventh-seeded Wildcats (19-11) won their 10th straight game with this the biggest yet after knocking off sixth-ranked LSU and No. 18 Tennessee to get to this championship.
The Wildcats not only snapped South Carolina’s 18-game winning streak this season, they also ended the Gamecocks’ search for a third straight SEC tournament title for the regular season champs with Kentucky’s fourth win in as many days.
South Carolina (28-2) led 45-30 with 4:45 left in the third quarter seemingly minutes away from cutting down the nets again. But the Gamecocks didn’t score after Aliyah Boston’s jumper with 5:04 remained that put them up 62-53.
No. 3 N.C. STATE 60, MIAMI 47
GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) — Third-ranked North Carolina State completed its chase to a third straight Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament championship Sunday, ending Miami’s upset-filled run.
Elissa Cunane had 17 points and eight rebounds despite exiting the game for a stretch in the second half with an apparent left-ankle injury for the top-seeded Wolfpack (29-3).
N.C. State shot just 35% but took control with a 17-4 run with Miami’s offense unable to much of anything, a burst that stretched an eight-point margin to 54-33 on consecutive 3-pointers by Diamond Johnson to end the third quarter and start the fourth.
N.C. State kept that margin at double figures the rest of the way, never letting Miami (20-12) repeat its improbable quarterfinal comeback win against No. 4 Louisville.
No. 5 BAYLOR 82, TEXAS TECH 57
WACO, Texas (AP) — NaLyssa Smith had a career-high 35 points with 12 rebounds in her senior day game for Baylor, and the Bears clinched the outright Big 12 women’s title with an 82-57 win over Texas Tech in the regular-season finale.
The Bears (25-5, 15-3 Big 12) were guaranteed at least a share of their 12th consecutive Big 12 title and 13th overall after an 87-62 win at ninth-ranked Iowa State last Monday. Baylor had to beat Texas Tech for the outright championship after the Cyclones ended their regular season with win Saturday night at West Virginia.
Bryn Gerlich had 12 points and Taylah Thomas 12 for Texas Tech (11-18, 4-14), which as a team wasn’t able to outscore Smith by herself until the second half.
No. 7 UCONN 71, MARQUETTE 51
UNCASVILLE, Conn. (AP) — Evina Westbrook scored 14 points and UConn cruised into the Big East title game with a win over No. 5 seed Marquette.
The Huskies didn’t need much help from reigning national player of the year Paige Bueckers, who played 18 minutes and finished with two points, two rebounds and two assists. The sophomore was playing her fifth game since returning from a left-knee injury that kept her out more than two months.
Christyn Williams and Dorka Juhasz each added 13 points for the Huskies (24-5), who are looking to win a ninth straight conference tournament championship.
Karissa McLaughlin had 15 points and Jordan King added 12 for Marquette (21-10).
No. 12 IOWA 74, No. 14 INDIANA 67
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Monika Czinano had 30 points and 10 rebounds and Caitlin Clark scored 18 as Iowa won its second Big Ten Tournament title in four years by beating Indiana.
The league’s regular-season co-champs have won seven straight games to earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. It’s the first time Iowa (23-7) has claimed regular season and tourney titles in the same season.
Grace Berger finished with 20 points and Nicole Cardano-Hillary had 19 for Indiana (21-8), which was playing for the fourth straight day.
Eventually, the weariness caught up with Indiana in the closest conference championship game since 2015 — and the first not to feature Maryland since 2014.
No. 22 FLORIDA GULF COAST 71, NORTH FLORIDA 60
FORT MYERS, Fla. (AP) — Kendall Spray scored a season-high 24 points, Kierstan Bell added 22 and Florida Gulf Coast defeated North Florida in a quarterfinal of the women’s Atlantic Sun Championship.
Spray made a season-high seven 3-pointers in nine attempts. She was 8 for 10 overall. Bell had seven rebounds, five blocks and three steals. Tishara Morehouse had 14 points and seven assists for the Eagles (27-2).
Emma Broermann and Jaida Bond scored 16 points each for North Florida (13-17) and Jazz Bond added 10.
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