UConn pulls away from Tennessee late to win

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Evina Westbrook, who transferred from Tennessee to UConn two years ago, connected on back-to-back fourth-quarter 3-pointers to spark the No. 3 Huskies to a 67-61 victory over the No. 25 Lady Volunteers Thursday night.

UConn freshman Paige Bueckers added nine points, eight rebounds and seven assists for the Huskies (9-0). After rolling her right ankle with just over 3 minutes left, Bueckers left the court for a minute to get her ankle taped up. She returned and hit a huge 3-pointer from the wing with 28 seconds left that gave the Huskies a 66-61 lead and sealed the win.

It was a classic meeting in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Revival Series during We Back Pat Week, which honors legendary Tennessee coach Pat Summitt, who passed away in 2016. The Lady Vols wore for the third time “Summitt” on the back of their jerseys.

This was UConn’s first trip to Tennessee since 2006.

No. 1 LOUISVILLE 67, No. 23 SYRACUSE 54

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Dana Evans scored 21 points, Hailey Van Lith added 18 on six 3-pointers, and Louisville used several small second-half runs to pull away from Syracuse.

Playing their first game as the nation’s No. 1 women’s team, the Cardinals (13-0, 6-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) countered the taller Orange (7-2, 4-2) by working the ball around the perimeter for opportunities. The patient approach built a slight edge before their 8-0 run over 1:39 in the third, highlighted by consecutive 3-pointers from Van Lith and Evans, provided a 47-38 lead.

Kianna Smith added five points to make it 52-44 entering the fourth, and Louisville followed with a 7-0 run for a 15-point cushion. Syracuse got within nine before Van Lith made another 3 and Evans added five more points to seal the late-night victory just three days after the program earned its first-ever No. 1 ranking.

No. 4 SOUTH CAROLINA 62, No. 22 GEORGIA 50

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Aliyah Boston had her second career triple-double with 16 points, 11 rebounds and 10 blocks to lead South Carolina to its 25th straight win over Southeastern Conference competition with a victory over Georgia.

Zia Cooke, South Carolina’s leading scorer, broke out of a scoring slump with 16 points as the Gamecocks (11-1, 6-0 SEC) won their 13th straight over the Lady Bulldogs (12-2, 4-2)

The 6-foot-5 Boston has been on stellar as of late, averaging 17 points, 12 rebounds and five blocks the past six games after a slow start to the season. She had 26 points, 16 boards and six blocks this past Monday night as South Carolina rolled over No. 15 Arkansas 104-82.

No. 17 OHIO STATE 81, No. 11 MICHIGAN 77

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Jacy Sheldon scored 20 points, including a 3-pointer and two free throws in the final 48 seconds, and No. 17 Ohio State beat No. 11 Michigan 81-77, spoiling Naz Hillmon’s 50-point, 16-rebound performance.

Hillmon broke Michigan’s program scoring record — for men’s or women’s — by making 20 of 30 field goals and 10 of 14 free throws to reach the half-century mark. It was the highest scoring output this season in Division 1, and the first 50-point game in the Big Ten since Rachel Banham’s 52 for Minnesota on Feb. 21, 2016.

But it wasn’t enough to overcome Michigan’s 16-point, third-quarter deficit.

Ohio State (8-1, 4-1 Big Ten) had five starters finish with double-figure scoring.

Akienreh Johnson added 14 points, six rebounds and five assists for Michigan (10-1, 5-1).

No. 12 KENTUCKY 76, AUBURN 71

AUBURN, Ala. (AP) — Blair Green scored 18 points on 7-of-9 shooting and Kentucky held off Auburn.

Rhyne Howard added 14 points for the Wildcats (11-3, 4-2 Southeastern Conference) after missing the last game with an ankle injury. Dre’Una Edwards and Robyn Benton, who just returned from coronavirus protocol, had 10 apiece.

Unique Thompson scored 18 of her 22 points in the second half, 13 in the fourth quarter, to keep Auburn (5-8, 0-5) in the game and had 10 rebounds, five below her nation-leading average.

No. 18 DEPAUL 80, BUTLER 66

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Lexi Held scored 17 points, Deja Church had a double-double and DePaul used strong finishes each quarter to roll to a win over Butler.

Sonya Morris scored 17 points for the Blue Demons (9-3, 6-1 Big East Conference) and Church added 13 points, reaching the 1,000 club, with 12 rebounds.

Genesis Parker scored 18 points for Butler (1-10, 1-9), which has lost three straight including a 103-35 decision at No. 3 UConn. Okako Adika added 16, Tenley Dowell 14, a career high, and Jaia Alexander had 12 with 10 rebounds.

No. 21 NORTHWESTERN 73, ILLINOIS 54

EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) — Lindsey Pulliam scored 19 of her season-high 28 points in the third quarter and grabbed six rebounds to help Northwestern beat Illinois.

Pulliam scored eight points during a 10-0 run for the Wildcats (8-2, 6-2 Big Ten) late in the third quarter that made it 49-30 and pushed their lead into double digits for good. Pulliam was 8 of 12 from the field in the period and finished the game 12 of 23.

Kennedi Myles had 16 points and eight rebounds for the Fighting Illini (2-7, 0-6).

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