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Tennessee all about control in NCAA opener

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Playing on its own campus against an NCAA tournament newcomer, top-seeded Tennessee was in control right from the start.

Shyra Ely had 17 points and eight rebounds, and reserve Brittany Jackson scored 16 on nearly perfect shooting for Tennessee (29-4), which raced to a 12-0 lead after just 3 1/2 minutes.

The Lady Vols' defense was impressive, holding Alabama State to just 24 percent shooting from the field (17-of-70). They next play Virginia.

The 16th-seeded Lady Hornets (20-11) were led by Crystal Kitt, who had a team-high 16 points and nine rebounds. Shameka Jackson, the SWAC player of the year, had 11 points and eight rebounds for Alabama State.

VIRGINIA 72, ILLINOIS 56: At Knoxville, Tenn., Anna Crosswhite and Brandi Teamer each scored 17 points for Virginia.

The eighth-seeded Cavaliers (17-13) came out strong after halftime with a 12-3 run, started by Crosswhite's 3-pointer. LaTonya Blue capped it with another 3 that gave the Cavaliers a 45-34 lead with 15:29 to go.

Janelle Hughes finished with 12 points while Aminata Yanni added 11 and Tiffanie Guthrie had 10 for Illinois (17-12), the ninth seed making its first NCAA tournament appearance since 2000.

Virginia, playing in its 20th straight NCAA tournament, had lost in the first round the last two years and next plays Tennessee.

NORTH CAROLINA 72, AUSTIN PEAY 70: At Boulder, Colo., Coretta Brown scored 20 points and Nikita Bell hit a layup with 20 seconds to go for North Carolina.

Brooke Armistead, who scored a season-high 30 points for Austin Peay, missed a layup at the buzzer that would have sent the game into overtime.

The loss snapped the Lady Govs' (27-3) school-record 22-game winning streak.

Bell, who scored the final four points for North Carolina (27-5), finished with 14.


VIRGINIA TECH 61, GEORGIA TECH 59: At West Lafayette, Ind., Carrie Mason drove the lane for an uncontested layup with 1 second to go, giving Virginia Tech the victory.

The Hokies (22-9) led 59-53 with just over three minutes left after consecutive 3-pointers by Ieva Kublina and Chrystal Starling.

But Fallon Stokes hit two free throws and Alex Stewart scored, too, pulling the Yellow Jackets (20-11) to 59-57 with a minute remaining. Stokes then scored on a fastbreak layup to tie the game with 18 seconds left.

Kublina led Virginia Tech with 18 points, and Starling added 15. Stokes had a game-high 25 points for the Yellow Jackets. Virginia Tech next plays Purdue.

PURDUE 66, VALPARAISO 51: At West Lafayette, Ind., Erika Valek scored 23 points and Purdue forced eight turnovers during a 24-2 first-half run for the victory.

Second-seeded Purdue (27-5) will play Virginia Tech (22-9) in the second round Monday.

Valparaiso (18-13), which reached the NCAA tournament for the first time as Mid-Continent Conference champion, couldn't sustain its strong start and fell apart midway through the first half under Purdue's constant pressure.

Valparaiso — which matched its season high with 23 turnovers — was led by Jenna Stangler with 12 points.

BOSTON COLLEGE 73, OLD DOMINION 72: At Norfolk, Va., Amber Jacobs' jumper with 3.3 seconds remaining lifted Boston College.

The Eagles (21-8) inbounded the ball with 21 seconds left and missed two shots under the basket before Jacobs made her shot from the top of the key.

Old Dominion (21-11) scored eight straight points, capped by Shareese Grant's jumper in the paint with 1:40 left, to go up 72-68. Jacobs, who led Boston College with 23 points, hit a 3-pointer with 40 seconds remaining to bring the fifth-seeded Eagles to 72-71.

The No. 12 seed Lady Monarchs were led by Monique Coker with 18 points and 13 rebounds. Okeisha Howard added 17 points.

VANDERBILT 54, LIBERTY 44: At Norfolk, Va., Ashley McElhiney scored 17 points for Vanderbilt.

The fourth-seeded Lady Commodores (22-9) play Boston College in the second round Monday.

Liberty (26-4), seeded 13th, trailed the entire game but closed to 37-34 on a layup by Katie Feenstra with a little over nine minutes remaining. Vanderbilt responded with a 9-0 run to push the lead to 13 with less then five minutes to go.

Abi Ramsey had 11 points and Chantelle Anderson added seven points and 10 rebounds for Vanderbilt. Liberty was led by Daina Staugaitiene with 13 points.


RUTGERS 64, WESTERN KENTUCKY 52: At Athens, Ga., Cappie Pondexter scored 13 of her 21 points in the last 11 minutes, and Rutgers overcame an eight-minute scoreless drought in the second half to win.

Pondexter added 10 rebounds, five assists and six steals, and Chelsea Newton scored 14 points for fourth-seeded Rutgers (21-7), which plays Georgia in the second round.

Leslie Logsdon scored 13 points for 13th-seeded Western Kentucky (22-9).

GEORGIA 80, CHARLOTTE 61: At Athens, Ga., Christi Thomas scored a career-high 31 points to lead Georgia.

Fifth-seeded Georgia (20-9) plays Rutgers on Monday. The Knights advanced earlier with a 64-52 victory over Western Kentucky. Rutgers advanced to the Final Four in 2000 with a regional final victory over Georgia in the last meeting between the two teams.

No. 12 seed Charlotte (21-9), playing in its first NCAA tournament, had no answer for Thomas, who went 13-of-24 and had eight rebounds. She also had four steals.

Monica League and Krystion Obie each scored 12 for Charlotte.

MISSISSIPPI ST. 73, MANHATTAN 47: At Albuquerque, N.M., Tan White made 5 3-pointers and scored 22 points and Mississippi State took advantage of an early scoring drought by Manhattan.

Manhattan (20-10) missed its first 13 shots and 21 of its first 24.

Guard Siobhan Kilkenny scored Manhattan's first points when she made a basket off an offensive rebound with 12:14 left in the half to halt an 11-0 run by Mississippi State.

LaToya Thomas also scored 22 points and had 13 rebounds for Mississippi State (24-7).


MINNESOTA 68, TULANE 48: At Stanford, Calif., Lindsay Whalen scored all of her 18 points in the second half for Minnesota. Whalen, the Golden Gophers' leading scorer at 21 points per game, was 0-for-3 in the first half, then scored 14 of her team's 23 points during one spurt in the second half.

The junior guard also had six assists and five rebounds for sixth-seeded Minnesota (24-5), which needed a big offensive effort in the second half.

WIS.-GREEN BAY 78, WASHINGTON 65: At Eugene, Ore., Tiffany Mor scored 15 points as Wisconsin-Green Bay advanced to the second round for the first time in school history.

The Phoenix (28-3) won their 12th straight game and have not lost since Jan. 25.

Ninth-seeded Washington (22-8) got closest when Giuliana Mendiola's jumper made it 50-49 with 11 minutes left, but Kristy Loiselle quickly put the Phoenix back in control with a 3-pointer. The Phoenix took over in the final 10 minutes, going up by as many as 14 points as the Huskies lost steam.