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Women's basketball: USF Bulls threaten but can't overcome No. 7 Rutgers Scarlet Knights

TAMPA — USF coach Jose Fernandez wants more than close calls against Top 25 teams.

April Sykes had 23 points and 10 rebounds, Khadijah Rushdan scored 16 and No. 7 Rutgers beat the Bulls 72-66 Saturday night.

USF was coming off a 66-63 overtime win against No. 21 DePaul on Tuesday. It completed a stretch of four of five games against ranked teams; the Bulls also lost to ranked Georgetown and Louisville and beat unranked Seton Hall.

"I was proud of how our kids fought, but I told our kids at the end of the year, there's not an asterisk saying we played Georgetown tough, they played Louisville tough, should have won against the No. 7 team in the country," Fernandez said. "It comes down to wins and losses. We've got to start closing out some of these Top 25 games."

Inga Orekhova had 15 points for USF (11-9, 3-3 Big East). The junior college transfer made 4 of 9 3-pointers.

"(Orekhova) shoots so well, that game was never out of sight," said coach C. Vivian Stringer, whose Knights (16-3, 5-1) had a six-game winning streak snapped Tuesday 62-57 to St. John's.

TAMPA 65, P.B. ATLANTIC 45: Jaleesa Harmon had 21 points, and the host Spartans (8-9) blew it open with a 19-0 first-half run.

BARRY 65, ECKERD 53: Jackie Perez hit 5 of 5 3-pointers and had 16 points for the host Buccaneers, who snapped a three-game winning streak by the Tritons (10-5, 4-3 Sunshine State).

NOVA SE 74, SAINT LEO 45: Danielle Robinson had nine of her 21 points during the host Sharks' 23-0 first-half run that put away the Lions (6-11, 0-7 SSC).

Top 25

NO. 1 BAYLOR 76, NO. 23 KANSAS ST. 41: Brittney Griner had 22 points and 12 rebounds for the Bears (19-0, 6-0 Big 12), who routed the Wildcats (13-5, 4-2) for their 34th straight home win.

NO. 2 NOTRE DAME 76, VILLANOVA 43: Skylar Diggins had 20 points for the host Irish (19-1, 7-0 Big East), who won their 16th straight game.

NO. 3 UCONN 88, NO. 21 DEPAUL 44: Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis tied a season high with 25 points for the Huskies (17-2, 6-1), who snapped a 28-game home winning streak by the Blue Demons (15-5, 3-3).

NO. 4 STANFORD 65, WASH. 47: Nnemkadi Ogwumike had 17 for the Cardinal (17-1, 8-0 Pac-12), which won its 73rd consecutive home game.

NO. 12 WIS.-GREEN BAY 80, CLEVELAND ST. 58: Julie Wojta had 12 points for the host Phoenix (17-0, 7-0 Horizon League), off to its best start ever.

NO. 14 TEXAS A&M 76, KANSAS 65: Kelsey Bone had 18 points to lead four players in double figures for the visiting Aggies (13-4, 4-2 Big 12).

Women's basketball: USF Bulls threaten but can't overcome No. 7 Rutgers Scarlet Knights 01/21/12 [Last modified: Saturday, January 21, 2012 10:37pm]

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