Haley Jones scored 17 points, Stanford defeated Arizona 54-53 and gave Cardinal and coach Tara VanDerve the national championship for the first time in 29 years on Sunday night.
Both teams struggled to score and missed a simple layup and shot, so this wasn’t a masterpiece at a stretch, but Stanford did enough to win. Stanford (31-2) built a 9-point lead in the fourth quarter before Arizona (21-6) cut to 51-50 at starguard Aari McDonald’s three-point.
After the time-out, Jones replied with a three-point play with 2:24 remaining. That will be the last basket of Stanford games. McDonald’s raised the Wildcats to 54-53 with 36.6 seconds remaining, converting three of the four free throws.
“Thanks to my teammates, my teammates are confident in me even when I’m not confident,” said Jones, who was commended as the best player in the tournament. “I saw them need to make me bigger, and I did.”
The Cardinal couldn’t even shoot after another time-out, giving Arizona a final chance of 6.1 seconds remaining, but McDonald’s contested shot from above the buzzer key bounced off the rim. It was.
“We knew who they were going to. She was killing us all,” said Stanford University security guard Kiana Williams. “We knew who they were going to, so when she held it up, they overloaded one side, and I just told Lexi to go, They went to catch her and made it a difficult shot, and thankfully she missed it. Finally played. “
After the shot, McDonald’s fell to the floor near the courtyard and was incredibly depressed while the Cardinal celebrated.
This season was a considerable journey for Van Derveer and the Cardinal. The team was forced out on the road for nearly 10 weeks due to the coronavirus and spent 86 days at the hotel during this nomadic season.
The team went straight to their business and now has another NCAA Championship. In the process, the Hall of Fame coach won her 1,099th career win to pass the Pat Summitt for the longest time in women’s basketball history.
Today, the 67-year-old coach has won the third national title, following the titles he won in 1990 and 1992. This made her the third tie with Baylor Kim Morky after Genoauriemma and the Summit.
VanDerveer had many great teams between titles, including a team led by Candice Wiggins and Ogwicke’s sisters Neka and Chinny, but the Cardinal had that elusive victory in the title game until Sunday night. I couldn’t finish the season.
This was Pac-12’s first women’s basketball championship since Van Derveer and Stanford won the title in 1992. The conference team last participated in the title game in 2010, when the Cardinal lost to UConn. The game was also played on Alamodome, the site of all games in this tournament, from Sweet 16 to Sunday’s Championship game.
Stanford crowned the college basketball queen after NCAA defeated Arizona | NCAA Tournament
Source link Stanford crowned the college basketball queen after NCAA defeated Arizona | NCAA Tournament