The first half of the Sweet 16 bracket is now complete. Did we see upsets? No, we didn't. In fact, if you were watching the games in Oklahoma City, both were lopsided affairs. However, if you were watching the games in Greensboro or were there in person, you definitely got to see some exciting games.
To the quick recaps!
#1 South Carolina 67, #4 North Carolina 65
The North Carolina Tar Heels won their second round game against Ohio State on a game-winning shot in the closing seconds this past Monday. But tonight, they lost to the South Carolina Gamecocks when Tiffany Mitchell scored a driving basket with 4.2 seconds remaining. She, along with Alaina Coates scored a game-high 18 points in the win. For North Carolina, Stephanie Mavunga scored 10 points and grabbed 13 rebounds.
With the win, the Gamecocks are in the Elite Eight for the first time since 2002. In addition, they also avenged last year's NCAA Tournament loss to the Tar Heels, which coincidentally was in the Sweet 16. Talk about killing two birds with one stone!
#2 Florida State 66, #3 Arizona State 65
Seminoles guard Leticia Romero had the best game of her college career as she led Florida State to their second Elite Eight in school history. The Sun Devils kept the game interesting and had a chance to win the game after Emiah Bingley missed a free throw in a one-and-one situation with seconds remaining. However, they turned it over right when the buzzer sounded.
In addition to Romero, Adut Bulgak, and Maegan Conwright scored in double figures for Florida State. Katie Hempen led Arizona State with 22 points during the loss.
#2 Baylor 81, #3 Iowa 66
Sune Agbuke scored a career-high 23 points and grabbed 12 rebounds to lead the Lady Bears to their fifth Elite Eight in six seasons. Since she's better known as a defensive force, this performance was welcome. The final score in this game was lopsided. But the momentum of this game changed at the end of the first half when the Lady Bears scored two consecutive three-pointers to answer an 11-0 Hawkeyes run. That run started when Iowa was only behind 36-34 with 1:06 to go.
As I noted in a FanShot earlier today, Samantha Logic had a triple-double in the losing effort for the Hawkeyes, where she scored 13 points, grabbed ten rebounds, and dished 14 assists. While I'm sure that Logic would have rather had the win, this type of performance still gives WNBA scouts one last positive impression while she's playing in competitive games before the Draft.
#1 Notre Dame, 81, Stanford 60
In women's college basketball, you would think that top tier programs would play each other on a regular basis, except for UConn and Tennessee over the last several years. So this tweet below actually surprised me:
But I didn't know that it has been that long since these two programs played against each other. After all, their football teams share a healthy rivalry with one another, but I digress.
In the game, the Irish had a comfortable win over the Cardinal where Lindsay Allen and Jewell Loyd seemingly took turns dominating the game. Allen scored 24 of her 28 points in the first half while Loyd scored 17 of her 21 points in the second. Bonnie Samuelson led the Cardinal with 17 points in the loss.