LAS VEGAS (AP) — Crimson and white confetti littered the basketball court docket all the procedure by the Mandalay Bay Occasions Heart on Sunday night, Erica Banks’ hit track “Buss It” blared by the sound blueprint, and Stanford’s ladies americans’s basketball avid gamers broke from posing for a celebratory characterize to assemble the usual Tik Tok dance.
It gave the impact ideal fitting, after Kiana Williams scored 26 points to lead No. 4 Stanford to the Pac 12 Tournament championship with a 75-55 pick over No. 9 UCLA.
“When the confetti came down it used to be time to accept as true with a unbiased correct time, time to bounce,” Williams stated. “Now we accept as true with got alternate to cope with (in the NCAA Tournament) in San Antonio, my place of start. We want to be the final group standing.”
Stanford, which has made the Pac-12 championship sport 18 times in 20 total tournaments, improved to 14-4 in the finals while winning its third title in 5 years.
Lexie Hull added 24 points while Haley Jones carried out with 10 points and 13 rebounds for Stanford (25-2).
“We certainly came out aggressive,” Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer stated. “We got rather loads of different contributions. It’s a total group effort.”
Michaela Onyenwere led UCLA (16-5) with 30 points. Charisma Osborne carried out with 11 points and 5 rebounds for the Bruins.
The game used to be a renewal of one in every of the extra storied rivalries in Pac 12 postseason historical past, as Stanford has performed UCLA greater than every other group in the Pac-12 Tournament. The Cardinal improved to 11-1 in opposition to the Bruins in the tournament – collectively with four wins in championship conferences.
Stanford controlled things in the critical half of, with a balanced attack led by Williams and Hull. The Cardinal feeble runs of 12-5 in the critical quarter and 11-3 to start the second quarter to in the end have interaction a 23-point lead into halftime.
Onyenwere used to be UCLA’s ideal brilliant location in the critical half of, scoring 13 points. She used to be 5-for-11 from the ground while the relaxation of the group used to be 2-of-15 (.133).
“I’m mighty extra upset that we performed so below our course of and dedication to what we stated we had been going to provide, and the shortcoming of urgency, dedication to the game thought, rebounding,” UCLA coach Cori Terminate stated. “I mean, we unbiased correct didn’t produce anything else in the critical half of that we stated we had been going to provide. And that is the one which certainly stings.”
UCLA began to claw its technique help into the game after Williams’ 3-pointer gave Stanford its biggest lead at 26 with 9: 19 left in the third quarter and got internal 12 after a 20-6 bustle. But Stanford regained its composure, built a 16-point lead midway by the fourth quarter in the help of a 9-point spurt from Hull, and by no technique seemed help to seal the pick. Stanford shot 80% in the fourth quarter.
“This day we confirmed some toughness in opposition to a actually, very unbiased correct group,” VanDerveer stated.
UCLA: The fight to search out offense, and defend the Cardinal, have to accept as true with left Terminate with a tough option on how to make employ of starter Natalie Chou. The senior guard used to be a defensive stopper in the group’s first two video games, came in with a gaggle second-ideal 35 steals, and used to be the Bruins’ third-main scorer with 10.3 points per sport. Chou, who averaged a tiny bit greater than 30 minutes per sport, performed 10 minutes in the critical half of and carried out with 26.
Stanford: Williams used to be named the match’s Most Excellent Participant after finishing with 49 points, 11 assists and eight rebounds in three video games. Williams, who can opt-in for one other senior season, used to be 12 of 18 from 3-point fluctuate and is now one 3-pointer scared of Candice Williams’ profession file of 295.
Hull and teammate Cameron Brink, Onyenwere, Arizona’s Aari McDonald and Oregon Affirm’s Aleah Goodman had been named to the all-match group.
ACE IN THE PLACE
Las Vegas Aces owner Designate Davis, who additionally owns the Las Vegas Raiders, took his seat for the title sport internal Mandalay Bay’s arena about 45 minutes earlier than tipoff. The Aces, whom Davis purchased in January, play their home video games all the procedure by the venue.
“I’m here to scout,” Davis stated with a wide smile.
In what gave the impact to be sheer twist of fate, Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson arrived at Mandalay Bay one day of the the same time as Davis. Merely as he did for the 2020 Pac 12 Tournament in the the same arena, Wilson used to be in attendance for the championship sport to toughen his youthful sister, Anna, a beginning guard for Stanford. Wilson, who sat socially distanced and located above and in the help of the Cardinal bench, performed the role of exuberant fan, cheering from his feet and barely taking phone pics and/or videos of his sister, who carried out with two points, four rebounds, three assists, and one pick in 31 minutes.
Both teams discontinuance unsleeping for their NCAA seeds.
AP Sports activities Creator Anne M. Peterson contributed to this characterize.
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