A full slate of games gave us a full spectrum of results.
That screeching sound you heard from the West Coast was the #21 Beavers holding on for the win over #9 Washington. The Huskies scored 31 points in the fourth, giving OSU fans agita as they watched their team have several “wtf!” moments. In the end, though, Oregon State got the 73-70 win.
Oregon State guard Gabriella Hanson said it was big to get a win against a Top 10 team that had been playing well, but the Beavers have bigger goals this season.
“This is one win. We’ve got a long ways to go,” Hanson said.
“I was not happy with our start,” Mittie said. “We seemed tentative early. I felt like I was screaming at them right away to get going. They kind of drive me crazy sometimes in that regard, because I feel like I’m whipping them from the start, and I don’t really want to do that.”
Tennessee held the lead throughout, topping #17 Kentucky 72-65. From John Adams: Tennessee’s Russell too much for Kentucky
Tennessee’s Mercedes Russell was at her best. Kentucky’s Makayla Epps was at her worst.
That’s a Twitter-sized analysis of Tennessee’s 72-65 victory Sunday afternoon at Thompson-Boling Arena. And those individual performances were only half-surprising.
“The goal is to be one day as good as them,” Abrahamson-Henderson said. “But we’re gonna have to move as fast as them and they move really, really fast offensively. And they do a good job executing their plays in what they want to do and where they want to get the ball.”
#3 Baylor by 47 over Kansas.
“They can play so many different styles because of their personnel groupings,” Kansas coach Brandon Schneider said. “I thought we showed some fight in the first quarter, but eventually their ability to rebound and get out in transition wears on you.”
#5 Mississippi State by 26 over LSU.
When the lights come on and the games mean more, Victoria Vivians is at her best.
The Mississippi State junior forward showed that Sunday, scoring 24 points and grabbing 12 rebounds to help the No. 5 Bulldogs rout LSU 74-48 in the Southeastern Conference opener for both teams.
“That’s how an All-American is supposed to play,” coach Vic Schaefer said. “You could tell on the defensive end that it just means something to her. That’s the difference in our team right now.”
#6 South Carolina by 48 over Alabama.
“I thought we took advantage of our strength,” South Carolina coach Dawn Staley said of the 6-foot-4 Coates and the 6-5 Wilson, who closed out the opening quarter with a 3-point play. Coates and Wilson each had two of South Carolina’s 10 blocked shots.
It was the fourth straight season that South Carolina, seeking its fourth straight league championship, started SEC play with a win.
UCLA forward Monique Billings was inspired by a recent phone call with Sparks forward Nneka Ogwumike, the MVP of the WNBA. Then Billings put on a show like Ogwumike.
“I was concerned coming into this came because of the emotion behind the last game and having a quick turnaround,” said coach Brenda Frese. “I thought we showed some uncharacteristic fatigue in the first quarter, but I thought in the second half we really came into stride.”
The good news is Michigan State got the win. The concerning news, coach Merchant passed out during the game, recovered and is staying overnight at the hospital. Hopefully it’s just the flu, but….good thoughts on their way.
Monday games I’m keeping my eye on:
- #8 Louisville v. #15 Duke, 7pm
- NC State v. #7 Florida State, 7pm. Post-upset game for the Wolf Pack
Undefeated #19 Virginia Tech v. North Carolina.
Virginia (11-2) v Syracuse. Bounce back game for the Orange.
- #2 Notre Dame v. Georgia Tech. Bounce back game for the Irish. Strong of Heart: Kristina Nelson:
There is still a poster of former University of Notre Dame women’s basketball legend Skylar Diggins adorning the wall in Jeremy Nelson’s bedroom in the Nelson family home in Buford, Georgia.
There are other Notre Dame women’s basketball artifacts that Jeremy, a budding basketball phenom, decorated his bedroom with after his sister, Kristina, announced she would be attending Notre Dame and playing for the Fighting Irish.
Herb Nelson, a former Grambling football player, finds comfort working in Jeremy’s bedroom. Herb and his wife Nanette have left everything the same in Jeremy’s bedroom since the day Jeremy went to play in a youth basketball game on Jan. 5, 2013.
Paul Nilsen offers up his 16 best women’s basketball moments of 2016
Seeing my fellow Brit Johannah Leedham win the EuroCup Women title with Tango Bourges. Being there in person at Le Prado was brilliant and she went on to be made captain of the French team which says it all. As does their current struggles while she is currently out with a foot injury. She’s a role model for young female ballers in the UK and also a genuine hero of mine.