Cal women beat Iowa to advance

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Cal women beat Iowa to advance

BOX SCORE

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) No wakeup call needed for California. No matter what time of the day, the Golden Bears can rebound and do it with tenacity. They can also turn up the defense, as they did Sunday in beating Iowa in the opening round of the NCAA tournament."It might have been our most complete game from start to finish," coach Lindsay Gottlieb said after Cal built a big lead and fought off a late rally for an 84-74 win over the Hawkeyes."The game plan was to put on a ton of ball pressure because I don't think they've faced a team like us and that can be destructive."The result was 18 turnovers by Iowa.Playing a noon game in the Eastern time zone - which would have felt like 9 a.m. - the Golden Bears built a 16-point lead in the second half after overcoming some initial jitters since no member of their current roster had ever played in the NCAA tournament."I was really nervous, if you couldn't tell at the beginning of the game. I just wanted to come into the game and in the NCAA tournament you're one and done. I couldn't have this be Oh, it was her first tournament game and she blew it,'" Cal's freshman point guard Brittany Boyd said.Layshia Clarendon scored 16 points and hit a pair of free throws with 41 seconds left for Cal (25-9), which allowed its lead to dwindle to six when Iowa's Kamille Wahlin and Kelly Krei hit late 3-pointers.Boyd, who missed five free throws, added 15 points, eight assists and six steals for Cal, which had a 41-29 rebounding edge, including 19-7 on the offensive boards."California could write a textbook on how to rebound. They are exceptional at maintaining that persistence for the basketball," Iowa coach Lisa Bluder said."There were so many times where they would not have possession of the ball but they would tip it up in the air and keep going for it."The Hawkeyes were playing their first game since March 2 when they lost in the Big Ten tournament, and Bluder didn't blame rust for the ball-handling mistakes."I don't think the press was where we had the turnovers. I felt we had more turnovers on passing decisions, people were in the passing lanes and forcing things there," Bluder said. "Those are the ones that concern me the most because those are the ones we should not be making this time of year."Wahlin led No. 9 seed Iowa (19-12) with 15 points. Krei, Theaiurra Taylor and Morgan Johnson finished with 14 points each and Samantha Logic scored 11 and had 11 assists."They were very physical with their athleticism and their strength. They were pushing and I was pushing back. It was definitely a physical game," said Johnson, the Hawkeyes' 6-5 center.Reshanda Gray had 14 points, and Gennifer Brandon and Talia Caldwell 11 each in Cal's balanced attack."We're just so versatile like coach was saying. We have so many weapons," Clarendon said. "It's kind of just like, Who's going to score today?' Take your pick."Boyd banked in a 3-pointer with just over 6 minutes left to make it 69-54 before Iowa went on its late spree, getting to within 78-71 with 1:33 left on a 7-0 spurt capped by Wahlin's 3-pointer.But after a missed free throw, Cal got yet another offensive rebound and Clarendon made two from the line with 1:23 remaining. Krei then sank a 3-pointer and the lead was down to six with 1:13 to go before the Golden Bears wrapped it up at the line.Clarendon hit a pair of jumpers late in the first half, the second with two seconds remaining, as Cal went up 42-33. The Golden Bears scored 16 points off nine first-half turnovers.Brandon worked inside for six straight early points for the Golden Bears in the second half, and they expanded their lead to 13. And with freshman Boyd leading the defense, the Golden Bears went up 62-46 as Clarendon took a long pass for a layup.Iowa showed little signs of the 16-day layoff in the early going. The Hawkeyes made eight of their first 12 shots.

Hermanson scores 17, No. 22 Saint Mary's beats BYU 70-57

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Hermanson scores 17, No. 22 Saint Mary's beats BYU 70-57

PROVO, Utah — Saint Mary's knows all about the raucous atmosphere at BYU. The Gaels hadn't won in Provo since 2013 and had only come out on top in three of their previous 12 trips.

Make it four out of 13.

Calvin Hermanson scored 17 points and No. 22 Saint Mary's cruised to a 70-57 victory over BYU on Saturday night, snapping a three-game road losing streak to its West Coast Conference rival.

"It's definitely one of the tougher places to play for us," Hermanson said. "Coming in here we know it's a huge crowd and we know they can get riled up on any 3-point shot or any run they make. We wanted to try to limit their runs and their big plays.

"The second half was pretty unbelievable how quiet the crowd was. It felt great for us."

With two games remaining on the regular-season schedule, the Gaels (24-3, 14-2) clinched a second-place finish in the conference standings behind top-ranked and undefeated Gonzaga.

Saint Mary's controlled the game most of the night, riding its staunch defense on one end and running efficient offense on the other. The Gaels were able to get to the rim consistently, but also knocked down 10 3-pointers.

BYU (19-10, 10-6) shot 39.7 percent from the field and connected on four 3s.

Evan Fitzner had 15 points for Saint Mary's, including 11 in the second half.

"We didn't turn the ball over and we shot the ball well," Gaels coach Randy Bennett said, "and were able to get some separation and then it made it tough on them. We kind of just wore them out after that.

"We're a little different team with Fitzner out there. He spaces the floor," Bennett added. "We just play a little different with Fitzner out there versus Jock (Landale). It's nice to have a Plan A and Plan B."

Saint Mary's took a 41-30 lead into halftime thanks to Hermanson's hot shooting and plenty of that trademark defense. The Gaels began the day ranked second in the nation in scoring defense, then held the Cougars to 37.9 percent shooting from the field in the first 20 minutes.

Saint Mary's shot 57.1 percent at the other end, including a 3-for-4 effort from Hermanson from behind the arc.

"I feel like we're better than we showed tonight," BYU guard TJ Haws said. "That team made a lot of runs on us. Tough defensive and offensive team. Very poised and disciplined.

"I want our team to just fight. When they punch us in the face, I want us to punch them right back."

BYU kept Landale under control in the half — and in foul trouble throughout — but Saint Mary's scored 22 of its 41 first-half points in the paint.

Eric Mika had 18 points for BYU, and Yoeli Childs added 13.

"The key to the game was that they were comfortable the entire time in our gym," BYU coach Dave Rose said. "That's on us. We need to be ahead. We need to get them to speed up a little bit because they're a little bit uncomfortable.

"But the game went pretty much exactly how they wanted it to go and we couldn't flip it. We couldn't get on top."

BIG PICTURE

Saint Mary's: The Gaels will be the No. 2 seed in the WCC tournament. No. 1 Gonzaga secured the regular-season title Saturday with a win over Pacific. An early December defeat to UT-Arlington is the Gaels' only bad loss this season, with the other two coming against Gonzaga.

BYU: The Cougars likely needed a win against the No. 22 team in the country to make an argument for the NCAA Tournament off their regular-season credentials. BYU has lost all three games against ranked opponents by double digits, including to Saint Mary's twice, and doesn't have a signature win. The Cougars get one last chance against Gonzaga next Saturday.

POLL IMPLICATIONS

No. 22 Saint Mary's might find itself moving up a bit after No. 17 Florida State and No. 21 South Carolina lost on Saturday.

UP NEXT

Saint Mary's: Travel to face Pepperdine on Thursday.

BYU: Play at Portland on Thursday.

Pickens, Travis rally Stanford past rival Cal for upset win

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Pickens, Travis rally Stanford past rival Cal for upset win

BOX SCORE

STANFORD -- Dorian Pickens scored 23 points, Reid Travis had 19 with nine rebounds and Stanford held on to beat California 73-68 on Friday night.

Marcus Allen added 11 points for the Cardinal, who overcame an early 12-point deficit to beat their cross-bay rivals for the 21st time in the last 24 meetings between the two teams at Maples Pavilion.

Stanford (13-13, 5-9 Pac-12) won for only the second time in seven games and split the season series with California.

Pickens had nine points, including a pair of 3-pointers, as part of a 20-5 run in the second half when the Cardinal pulled away.

After California closed within 62-56 on Grant Mullins' 3-pointer with 4:54 remaining, Allen made two free throws and Pickens scored on a jumper from the free-throw line as he was falling backward onto the court.

Jabari Bird scored 23 points and set a career-high with seven 3s for the Golden Bears (18-8, 9-5). Ivan Rabb added 16 points and 13 rebounds after being slowed by foul trouble in the first half.