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NCAAW Tournament Recaps: Wright State, Belmont and BYU earn upset wins on Day 2

The Wright State Raiders became just the seventh 13-seed to win in the first round of the NCAA Tournament and advanced to the second round for the first time in program history. The No. 12 seed Belmont Bruins and No. 11 seed BYU Cougars also won nail-biters, while the No. 4 seed Indiana Hoosiers dominated on defense and the No. 2 seed Maryland Terrapins just flat-out dominated.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: JAN 09 Women’s Wright State at Cleveland State
Angel Baker (jersey #15) led Wright State to its historic win.
Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

After a day of all chalk, there were three upsets on Day 2 of the first round of the NCAA Tournament on Monday, highlighted by No. 13 seed Wright State’s triumph over No. 4 seed Arkansas, which was the only team to beat No. 1 seed UConn this year.

Here are recaps of all of Monday’s games:


(13) Wright State Raiders 66, (4) Arkansas Razorbacks 62

The Raiders were up eight entering the fourth and had led by as much as 14. The Razorbacks fought back and led 62-61 with 56 seconds to go, but Angel Baker (26 points, 12 rebounds, four steals) made a clutch 3-pointer with 29 ticks left to put Wright State back on top for good. Jada Roberson then made two free throws with eight seconds left to make the score 66-62. Chelsea Dungee made a clutch trey for Arkansas that put it up one with 1:51 to go, but her 27 points were not enough for the Razorbacks to secure the win.

(5) Missouri State Lady Bears 70, (12) UC Davis Aggies 51

Jasmine Franklin was three points and two rebounds shy of a 20-20 game and Brice Calip added 18 points and seven boards for the Lady Bears, who led by eight at the break before pulling away more in the third. Cierra Hall notched 14 points, eight rebounds and four assists in defeat.

(6) Oregon Ducks 67, (11) South Dakota Coyotes 47

The Ducks were able to win without one of their stars in Te-Hina Paopao. Senior sharpshooter Erin Boley followed up a four-point performance in Oregon’s Pac-12 Tournament loss to Oregon State with 22 points on four made 3-pointers. Clearly she wasn’t about to let her senior season end. Nyara Sabally added 17 points for the winners. Becky Hammon Mid-Major Player of the Year finalist Hannah Sjerven had 18 points and 12 rebounds in defeat. Oregon led 25-8 after one before winning the second 9-1.

(3) Georgia Bulldogs 67, (14) Drexel Dragons 53

The Bulldogs, who were coming off a great SEC Tournament, struggled early and trailed by as many as nine in the first. They battled back to tie it at halftime and then won the third by five and the fourth by nine. Center Jenna Staiti led the way with 19 points and seven rebounds, while Que Morrison nearly notched a triple-double for the winners with 11 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists. Hannah Nihill notched 22 points in defeat.

(7) Northwestern Wildcats 62, (10) Central Florida Knights 51

The first half was close, but a 13-7 advantage in the third gave Northwestern the edge. The Wildcats’ best offensive weapon, Lindsey Pulliam, who averaged 18.8 points per game last year before seeing a dip this year and falling to second on the team in scoring, notched 25 points — 11 more than the game’s next-best scorer (Central Florida’s Masseny Kaba, who added 13 rebounds and five assists). Jordan Hamilton dished out eight assists for the winners, while their leading scorer and steal-machine Veronica Burton was held to four points and one steal in 33 minutes.

(2) Louisville Cardinals 74, (15) Marist Red Foxes 43

The Cards trailed 15-12 after one, but won the second by eight, the third by 17 and the fourth by nine. Freshman Hailey Van Lith proved that she is better than her season scoring average of 11.4 indicates by leading the team with 17 points in her NCAA Tournament debut. Two-time reigning ACC Player of the Year Dana Evans added 15 points and teammate Konno Norika swiped six steals. Marist didn’t have any double-figure scorers. Willow Duffell probably had the best stat line for the Red Foxes with six points, eight rebounds and four assists.


(6) Texas Longhorns 81, (11) Bradley Braves 62

Texas jumped out to a 19-7 lead after one and led by double digits the rest of the way. Projected No. 1 overall WNBA Draft pick Charli Collier led the Longhorns with 23 points and 15 rebounds, while gritty but not always gaudy Audrey Warren tied a season high with 19 points. Bradley star Lasha Petree poured in 33 points in defeat.

(3) UCLA Bruins 69, (14) Wyoming Cowgirls 48

The Bruins led 23-11 after one and led by double digits the rest of the way. Superstar small forward Michaela Onyenwere led UCLA with 25 points and added seven rebounds, while 5-foot-9 guard Charisma Osborne notched 15 points and grabbed 10 boards. Natalie Chou also had 15 points for the winners. Alba Sanchez Ramos’ 15-point, 10-rebound double-double was not enough for Wyoming.

(7) Alabama Crimson Tide 80, (10) UNC Tar Heels 71

Jordan Lewis piled up the stats with 32 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists for Alabama while teammate Ariyah Copeland notched a double-double of 11 points and 12 rebounds. The Crimson Tide’s leading scorer, Jasmine Walker, added 13 points and nine boards and Hannah Barber rounded out the team’s double-figure scorers with 14 points. Both Lewis and Barber were 4-of-7 from deep. A Stephanie Watts triple cut Alabama’s lead to five with 6:46 to play, but the Crimson Tide responded with a 13-4 run. The closest UNC got after that was within seven on another Watts 3-pointer with 1:12 to go. Watts finished with 29 points and was 7-of-11 from beyond the arc.

(2) Maryland Terrapins 98, (15) Mount St. Mary’s Mountaineers 45

This one was the biggest blowout of the first round as the nation’s No. 1 scoring offense dominated and it did it with just five made threes. No Terp attempted more than three shots from beyond the arc with just 13 total attempts accumulated as a team. Ashley Owusu led the way with 22 points, eight rebounds and seven assists, while Diamond Miller added 19 points and Chloe Bibby went for 11 points and 11 rebounds. The Mountaineers didn’t have any double-figure scorers. Rebecca Lee has seven points and seven rebounds in defeat.


(12) Belmont Bruins 64, (5) Gonzaga Bulldogs 59

Belmont led by just two with 46 seconds to go, but went on a 5-0 run after that with a Madison Bartley 3-point play and two free throws from Tuti Jones to lead by seven with five seconds remaining. The Bruins came back from down nine after one by winning the second 20-10. They then won the third 19-12. Destinee Wells scored 25 points and dished out seven assists for the winners. Jill Townsend notched 17 points and six rebounds in defeat.

(4) Indiana Hoosiers 63, (13) VCU Rams 32

Indiana posted the best defensive performance of the first round in this one, holding VCU to six points in the second and three in the fourth. Grace Berger was good for 20 points to lead the way offensively and she added eight rebounds. Ali Patberg added 17 points while Mackenzie Holmes had 14 points, seven rebounds and five blocks and Aleksa Gulbe had seven points, 10 boards and three blocks. VCU didn’t have any double-figure scorers. Sarah Te-Biasu had seven points and the game high in assists (four) and steals (four) in defeat.

(11) BYU Cougars 69, (6) Rutgers Scarlet Knights 66

Paisley Harding scored 28 points and Tegan Graham made a key 3-pointer late in the fourth to help lift BYU to a comeback victory. The Graham triple made it 62-58 BYU with 1:18 to play and Shaylee Gonzales (17 points) later broke Rutgers’ back when she was fouled on a 3-point attempt and made all three free throws to put the score at 65-61 with 30 ticks remaining. A Liz Martino 3-pointer cut the Scarlet Knights’ deficit to two with five seconds to go and Harding missed one of two free throws with three seconds left to leave the door open. However, Rutgers superstar Arella Guirantes (game-high 30 points) couldn’t get a shot off after that.

Harding had an individual 6-0 run with a 3-point play and a 3-pointer that was part of a 12-0 BYU run that take the score from 54-45 Rutgers to 57-54 BYU in the fourth. The Scarlet Knights led by 12 with 2:10 to go in the third.

Guirantes, an 86.8 percent free throw shooter, struggled from the stripe early and finished 8-of-12. One of her co-stars, Tekia Mack, was held scoreless in the first half before finishing with 11 points. BYU led 5-1 early and then 24-20 with 5:23 to go in the second.

(3) Arizona Wildcats 79, (14) Stony Brook Seawolves 44

Superstar guard Aari McDonald (20 points), Trinity Baptiste (18 points) and Cate Reese (16 points) led the way for the Wildcats, who led 26-10 after one and 47-20 at the break. Asiah Dingle notched 14 points in defeat.

(7) Iowa State Cyclones 79, (10) Michigan State Spartans 75

Ashley Joens was difficult to stop all game long in this one. She topped Minnesota Lynx forward Bridget Carleton for most points in a single NCAA Tournament game by a Cyclone with 33 points (9-of-12 from the free throw line). She also had nine rebounds. Joens knew her team was in good shape after she converted on a 3-point play to put it up 73-66 with 3:01 to play, but the game was far from over. The Spartans cut it to one on a Alyza Winston jumper with 28 ticks left. Michigan State then had to resort to fouling and Lexi Donarski went 2-of-2 with 26 seconds to go to put Iowa State up 78-75. Winston missed a three with 10 seconds remaining and then Joens got the rebound and was fouled. She missed her first free throw, but iced the game for her team by making the next one. Nia Clouden had 16 points and six rebounds in defeat.

(2) Texas A&M Aggies 84, (15) Troy Trojans 80

In a nail-biter, SEC Sixth Woman of the Year Destiny Pitts was a perfect 4-of-4 from the line in the final six seconds and went 2-of-2 with two seconds left to ice the game. Janiah Sanifer had gone 2-of-3 for Troy with four seconds left to cut it to 82-80. The game was tied at 77 with 1:37 to go and Troy led by two with 5:04 to play. A&M led by 14 at the break before Troy won the third 23-16. Ciera Johnson (16 points, 14 rebounds) and N’dea Jones (11 points, 10 rebounds) both had double-doubles for the winners. Their teammate Aaliyah Wilson had 12 points, six assists and six steals while Jordan Nixon led the team with 21 points. Alexus Dye led the Trojans with 26 points and 11 rebounds while Felmas Koranga added 20 and 11.