No. 8 Miami 70, Idaho St. 41
SPOKANE, Wash. (AP)
Idaho State's future is bright even after a blowout loss to Miami in the NCAA tournament.
Every starter except senior Chelsea Pickering returns next season from the team that lost 70-41 to the third-seeded Hurricanes in the first round Saturday.
''I told them that I'm indebted to them. They helped me make a lifelong dream come true,'' coach Seton Sobolewski said of making the tournament.
Miami's Shenise Johnson scored 20 points and made history. She joined Nancy Lieberman as the only Division I players in history to record 2,000 points, 1,000 rebounds, 500 assists and 400 steals in a career. Johnson needed four more steals to reach the mark and she got them against the Bengals.
While Miami has one of the top offenses in college basketball, its defense stood out Saturday. The Hurricanes held Idaho State to a season-low 16 points in the first half and to 25 percent shooting in the game.
Ashleigh Vella led Idaho State (24-8) with 12 points.
''They are the most athletic group that we've faced,'' Vella said.
The 14th-seeded Bengals were winners of the Big Sky Conference tournament.
''We played against aggressive teams before, but we have not played against an aggressive team of that size and that athleticism before,'' Sobolewski said.
The Bengals forced 20 turnovers, but it wasn't enough.
''As a point guard, I felt like I had to kind of adjust my passes, be a little bit quicker,'' Idaho State's Kaela Oakes said. ''I just felt like it was more difficult to guard and dish and get to do what is normally easier for me to do. Their athleticism, their long arms, and being able to cover the floor, like Coach said, is really tough as a point guard.''
Third-seeded Miami (26-5) will play 11th-seeded Gonzaga (27-5) on Monday night, with the winner advancing to the round of 16.
Sylvia Bullock added 11 points for Miami, and 6-foot-6 center Shawnice Wilson had nine points and 14 rebounds.
''I knew coming into the game I would have an advantage because their tallest player is 6-1 or 6-2,'' Wilson said. ''It's important to use our size and strength as an advantage.''
Johnson was 8 for 15 from the field and had only two turnovers.
Miami shot 46 percent as a team
The Hurricanes led 33-16 at halftime, behind 13 points from Johnson and 10 rebounds from Wilson.