Connecticut women roll into NCAA regional final

Connecticut women roll into NCAA regional final
Connecticut's Breanna Stewart is defended by Brigham Young's Morgan Bailey during the Huskies' 70-51 victory Saturday at the Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln, Neb. (Cloe Poisson / Hartford Courant / MCT)

Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis scored 19 points to lead four Connecticut players in double figures Saturday, and the defending national-champion Huskies shook off Brigham Young early in the second half to win, 70-51, and reach the Lincoln (Neb.) Regional final in the NCAA women's basketball tournament.

The Huskies (37-0), winners of 43 consecutive games, will try for their seventh straight Final Four when they take on Texas A&M on Monday night. The Aggies advanced with a victory over DePaul.


UConn scoring leaders Breanna Stewart and Bria Hartley overcame slow starts, with Stewart getting 12 of her 16 points in the second half and Hartley all 12 of hers after halftime. Moriah Jefferson had 11 for UConn.

Kim Beeston led the Cougars (28-7) with 16 points.

Texas A&M 84, DePaul 65: Courtney Walker scored 25 points to power the Aggies into the Lincoln Regional final.

The Aggies (27-8) led by 14 points at halftime and turned back two DePaul runs. Courtney Williams had 14 of her 15 points in the second half.

DePaul (29-7) shot 40%, 28% in the first half, and struggled defensively against the physical Aggies. Jasmine Penny had 16 of her 24 points in the second half and Megan Rogowski scored 14 for the Blue Demons.

Karla Gilbert and Jordan Jones had 11 points apiece and Tori Scott scored 10 for Texas A&M, which shot 60% and has won each of its three tournament games by at least 15 points.

Notre Dame 89, Oklahoma State 72: Natalie Achonwa got her team going early and never let up, finishing with 23 points, and Jewell Loyd scored 20 to lead the Fighting Irish (35-0) to a convincing win in the South Bend (Ind.) Regional.

Top-seeded Notre Dame is a victory away from its fourth straight Final Four berth, while Oklahoma State (25-9) missed a chance to advance to a regional final for the first time in school history. It is 0-3 in regional semifinals.

To get to the Final Four, the Irish will have to beat Baylor, the last team to knock them off at home.

The Irish jumped to a 14-0 lead in the opening 3 minutes 31 seconds, as Oklahoma State missed its first six shots. Oklahoma State later used a 7-0 run to cut the deficit to 24-14, but that was as close as it got.

Baylor 90, Kentucky 72: Odyssey Sims scored 25 points, including her 1,000th this season, as the No. 2-seeded Bears (32-4) routed the No. 3 Wildcats (26-9).

Sims became only the second women's player to reach that milestone in a single season. She is 41 points behind the record of 1,062 set by Missouri State's Jackie Stiles in 2001.

The last time these teams met, in December, they played one of the most exciting games women's basketball history. Kentucky won, 133-130, in four overtimes.

This one fell far short of matching that thriller as Sims and Baylor put the game away by halftime.