BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (AP) — paige buckers and christian williams each scored 15 points to lead a balanced UConn offense to a 75-58 win over Indiana on Saturday to advance the Huskies to their 16th straight regional finals.
Olivia Nelson-Ododa He had a double-double with 10 points and 14 rebounds for Connecticut (28-5), who outscored the Hoosiers 46-32 in the paint.
Azzi Fudd added 13 points for the Huskies, who face top-seeded North Carolina on Monday night in a bid to earn a 14th straight trip to the Final Four.
ali patbergin his seventh year of college basketball thanks to transfer rules and COVID-19, he had 16 points for the third-seeded Hoosiers, who finish their season 24-9. Grace Berger I had 13 points and mackenzie holmes added 12 for Indiana.
UConn led 37-33 at the half but opened the second half with a 16-0 run to take control of the game.
Williams’ layup put UConn up by double figures for the first time at 44-33. aaliyah edwardsThe free throw capped the run and gave the Huskies their first 20-point lead at 53-33.
Indiana outscored UConn 13-6 to close out the quarter and cut the deficit to 11 midway through the fourth quarter on a basket by Holmes.
But Bueckers responded at the other end and the Hoosiers couldn’t close the gap any further.
Indiana started strong. Holmes spun down the lane for the first basket and the Hoosiers opened with an 8-2 run.
The Huskies got spooked early when Bueckers tried to steal and grabbed his surgically repaired left knee. She ran to the dugout and the coaches fixed her, but she came back to start the second quarter. She played 33 minutes in the eighth game back from the injury that kept her out for more than two months.
The Huskies closed the first quarter with an 8-0 run. A layup and free throw by Williams gave UConn its first lead at 19-18 and his blocked shot just before the buzzer preserved a 21-18 lead.
UConn extended the lead to nine points on Fudd’s third 3-pointer of the half.
Indiana benefited from an odd play that ended the second quarter. Edwards threw a layup missed by Holmes out of bounds, apparently believing time had expired. But that gave the Hoosiers the ball back with 1.2 seconds left and a 3-pointer. aleksa gulbe the halftime bell sent the teams to the locker room with UConn winning 37-33.
Indiana: At 24-9, finished one win shy of the program record. The No. 3 seed was the highest in program history in the NCAA Tournament and the Hoosiers advanced to their first Elite Eight last season.
UConn: The Huskies haven’t given up 60 points since Feb. 11, when they beat DePaul 84-60. They had held their previous 10 opponents to 51 points or less, giving up 40 points or less in seven of those games.
UNTIL NEXT TIME
UConn will face North Carolina State on Monday night in the regional final.