Stanford beats FSU 63-44, return home for Sweet 16
AMES, Iowa (AP) Chiney Ogwumike had 21 points and nine rebounds, and Stanford broke open the game with a 30-2 run spanning the halves in a 63-44 victory over Florida State in the second round of the NCAA women’s tournament Monday night.
The second-seeded Cardinal (31-3) won two games in Ames to advance to the regional they’ll host at Maples Pavilion starting Saturday. They’re in the Sweet 16 for the seventh year in a row.
Stanford’s opponent in the regional semifinal Saturday will be No. 11 Florida or No. 3 Penn State. Those teams meet in a second-round game in State College, Pa., on Tuesday
The 10th-seeded Seminoles (21-12) struggled to score in both of their two tournament games, following a 55-44 win over Iowa State with another dud.
Lili Thompson added 14 points and Bonnie Samuelson had 11 with three 3-pointers. The Cardinal had 17 assists on 22 field goals.
FSU’s Natasha Howard had nine points and seven rebounds, all in the second half.
The last time Stanford and Florida State met was in the 2007 NCAA tournament. The Seminoles, a No. 10 seed then as well, won 68-61 on Stanford’s home court to reach the Sweet 16 for the first time.
There was no threat of an upset this time, even though Stanford trailed by eight points early. Then the Cardinal went on their 30-2 run that made it 36-16.
The Cardinal began the game in a tightly packed 2-3 zone defense and challenged the Seminoles to shoot from the outside. The Seminoles made 5-of-6 shots.
Stanford extended its zone after the first media timeout, and things didn’t come as easily for the Seminoles. FSU missed 20 of 22 shots to end the half and was held scoreless for nearly 10 minutes.
Howard, the Seminoles’ All-America candidate who has a school-record 15 double-doubles this season, couldn’t get open. It took her 12 minutes to take her first shot, a miss, and she also was off on her next five.
Ogwumike, the Cardinal’s national player of the year candidate, also started slowly. She had two touches and one shot on Stanford’s first eight possessions before she scored on Amber Orrange’s entry pass. Ogwumike scored three straight baskets, Bonnie Samuelson made a 3-pointer and Ogwumike sank a free throw to tie it at 14.
Ogwumike’s three-point play and a couple more baskets by Thompson and Samuelson highlighted a 16-0 surge that ended with a jumper by FSU’s Cheetah Delgado.
The Cardinal rolled off the next 10 points to make it a 16-point game at half. They made nine straight shots over the halves before Samuelson missed a 3-pointer. By then it was 40-18.
Howard finished her career as FSU’s second-leading scorer (1,811 points) and career rebounding leader (1,047).