Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Huge freshman helps take out Vols

MEMPHIS — Brittney Griner has grown up a lot this season. Just ask Tennessee. The 6-foot-8 freshman had 27 points, 10 blocks and seven rebounds, leading Baylor to a 77-62 win Saturday in a semifinal of the Memphis Region.

"She was the X factor," Tennessee coach Pat Summitt said.

The only other region final for the Bears (26-9) came in 2005, when they won it all. The Vols, who lost in the first round last season, have failed to reach the Final Four in consecutive seasons for the first time since 1993-94.

Tennessee (32-3) limited Griner to 15 points, four rebounds and four blocks in a 74-65 win Nov. 15. But it couldn't do it again despite putting as many as four players on her at a time. Griner hit several shots while double-teamed or passed for an easy layup.

"You're watching a phenom out here play above the rim," Baylor coach Kim Mulkey said.

Griner had been tentative on offense since she was suspended for two games for punching an opponent earlier this month.

"I just knew I had to … go back to the old Brittney," she said.

Kelley Cain's jumper put Tennessee up 55-50 with 7:53 left. But Griner made consecutive layups and added a three-point play as part of a 21-1 run.

"I'm just really excited that to get to the Elite Eight, we had to go through the best," Morghan Medlock said. "And the best in this region was Tennessee."

Guard lifts Blue Devils

MEMPHIS — Jasmine Thomas tied a career high with 29 points as Duke ended San Diego State's surprising run with a 66-58 win in the Memphis Region semifinals.

The 5-foot-9 junior guard also had five rebounds, six assists and five steals.

"She's a load," said coach Beth Burns, whose 11th-seeded Aztecs (23-11) failed to become the first double-digit seed to reach the region final since the tournament expanded to 64 teams in 1994.

"She's complete. Her vision, her ball skills, her defensive ability. She's good. She's real good."

Duke (30-5) led 35-34 at halftime then scored the first 10 of the second half.

"I just read what the defense was giving me," said Thomas, who was 10-of-19 from the field. "Joy (Cheek) set a few more screens, and they played back off me. So I took the shot that was open."

Stanford routs Georgia

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — All-American Jayne Appel had 17 points and five rebounds in just 24 minutes while playing on a tender right ankle to lead Stanford past Georgia 73-36 in a Sacramento Region semifinal.

"Our guards did well getting us the ball and dishing down low," Appel said. "They gave us point-blank shots, and it was our job to put them in."

The Cardinal (34-1) led 37-15 at halftime and held Georgia (25-9) to 12-for-59 shooting overall (4-of-22 on 3-pointers).

FAst Facts

Bears-Blue Devils2

Baylor and Duke will meet in the region final — in the men's and women's tournament. Fourteen times since 2000, including three last season, a school has had both teams reach the region final. But according to STATS LLC, this is the first time the same two schools will meet in both games.

Huge freshman helps take out Vols 03/27/10 [Last modified: Sunday, March 28, 2010 12:29am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays hoping RHP Romo can regain form, help bullpen



    Sergio Romo celebrates striking out Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers to win Game Four of the Major League Baseball World Series at Comerica Park in 2012.
  2. New Bucs player murals go up at Raymond James Stadium


    Each summer, it's a sign that training camp is soon to arrive at One Buc Place: the changing of the huge player murals on each corner of Raymond James Stadium.

    Bucs receivers DeSean Jackson and Mike Evans share a mural on the southeast corner of Raymond James Stadium.
  3. Jordan Spieth wins British Open (w/ video)


    SOUTHPORT, England — Someday, perhaps soon, there will be a plaque at Royal Birkdale for Jordan Spieth, much like the one off the 16th hole that celebrates Arnold Palmer and the 6-iron he slashed out of the rough in 1961 to win the British Open and usher in a new era of golf.

    Jordan Spieth, right, comes from one back of Matt Kuchar, left, after 13, going birdie-eagle-birdie-birdie-par to win by 3.
  4. Fennelly: Brutal weekend could be start of something worse for Rays

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Well, that was lovely.

    Brad Boxberger suffers his second loss in the three-game series, this time by allowing back-to-back homers in the eighth inning when called on to protect a 5-3 lead. “Just bad pitches,” he says.
  5. Wesley Chapel hockey camp impresses youth players, parents

    Lightning Strikes

    WESLEY CHAPEL — As a 17-year-old Triple-A hockey player, MacCallum Brown regularly plays against elite talent. As a Palm Harbor resident, he often has to travel to face that talent.