Michigan Women Knock Off Tennessee, Reach First Sweet 16

Michigan Women Knock Off Tennessee, Reach First Sweet 16

SAN ANTONIO: Leigha Brown scored 23 points and Naz Hillmon added 19 to lead No. 6 seed Michigan to a 70-55 win over third-seeded Tennessee on Tuesday in the womens NCAA Tournament.

The Wolverines had been 0-5 in the second round before pulling off the victory over the Lady Vols.

Leading 18-16 with eight minutes left in the first half, Michigan (16-5) held Tennessee to just one field goal the rest of the second quarter and built a 28-19 halftime lead.

Tennessee (17-8) trailed by 15 heading into the fourth quarter and didn’t get closer than nine.

Hillmon, the Big Ten Player of the Year, also had 15 rebounds.

A trip to the Sweet 16, where the Wolverines will face either Baylor or Virginia Tech in the River Walk Region, was just another first this year. The team started 10-0 for the first time in school history. Michigan was also in the rankings all season for the first-time, as well as having Hillmon be the first player to earn All-America honors as a second-teamer.

Rennia Davis scored 12 points to lead the Lady Vols, who were playing Michigan for the first time.

IOWA 86, KENTUCKY 72

Caitlin Clark finished with 35 points on 13-of-21 shooting and six 3-pointers after outscoring Kentucky on her own in the first half, and the Hawkeyes advanced to the Sweet 16.

The fifth-seeded Hawkeyes (20-9) scored the games first 11 points with all five starters getting a basket, Clarks being a 3-pointer.

They led throughout to advance past the second round for only the third time in their 14 NCAA appearances during Bluders 21 seasons. Iowa will next play No. 1 seed UConn or No. 8 Syracuse.

Two-time AP All-American guard Rhyne Howard finished with 28 points to lead the fourth-seeded Wildcats (18-9). She was 1 of 7 shooting in the first half, but finished 8 of 21 with five 3-pointers, along with eight assists. DreUna Edwards added 16 points and Jazmine Massengill 10.

Monika Czinano added 14 points and McKenna Warnock 10 for the Hawkeyes.

MERCADO REGION

NORTH CAROLINA STATE 79, SOUTH FLORIDA 67

Jakia Brown-Turner scored 19 points and top-seeded North Carolina State shrugged off a challenge from No. 8 South Florida with a big third quarter, advancing to the Sweet 16.

Jada Boyd added 18 points and 10 rebounds for the Wolfpack (22-2), who reached their third straight regional semifinal and 14th overall. They will face fourth-seeded Indiana or 12th-seeded Belmont.

USF (19-4) led by a point early in the third quarter before N.C. State used two big runs to pull away and take a 12-point lead into the fourth.

The Bulls pulled within eight points with 3 1/2 minutes to go, but the Wolfpack scored the next five points.

Elena Tsineke had 22 points to lead the Bulls, who made six 3-pointers in the first half to spark hope of an upset, but hit just three more after halftime.

HEMISFAIR REGION

GEORGIA TECH 73, WEST VIRGINIA 56

Lotta-Maj Lahtinen scored 22 points, Lorela Cubaj had 21 points and 12 rebounds, and No. 5 seed Georgia Tech used a big third quarter to beat No. 4 West Virginia.

The Yellow Jackets needed a second-half rally in the opening round against Stephen F. Austin the fourth-largest comeback in tournament history but had this game well in control with a 17-point lead over the Mountaineers to start the fourth.

Lahtinen was 9 of 16 from the field and struck for 17 points in the first half to dig the Yellow Jackets out of an early hole.

Georgia Tech (17-8) advanced to the Sweet 16 for the second time in program history and first since 2012. The Yellow Jackets will meet either No. 1 South Carolina or No. 8 Oregon State.

Esmery Martinez scored 13 points to lead West Virginia (22-7).

___

More AP women’s college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/womens-college-basketball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25