Women's basketball: Baylor hangs on to win title

Women's basketball: Baylor hangs on to win title

The Baylor Lady Bears are the 2019 national champions after defeating Notre Dame 82-81 in the women's NCAA Tournament title game on Sunday.

Before we look ahead to this clash between this pair of No. 1 seeds, let's review how they got here as Baylor knocked off OR 72-67 and Notre Dame defeated UConn 81-76 on Friday night.

"We had to do it for LC", Jackson said after the game. When Baylor's players first came into Amalie Arena a few days ago, Mulkey pointed out the blue 1982 Louisiana Tech banner that hangs in every arena in which the Women's Final Four is held. Then they met OR on Friday night and found themselves in a back-and-forth contest that featured 12 ties and 22 lead changes.

In all, Smith tallied 14 points and six rebounds in the win.

"If you go back to last night's game, I thought two areas we were not very good at early: turning the ball over, just uncharacteristic turnovers for us in transition when there was no need to, and then offensive boards".

This game between the Huskies and the Irish was a rematch of last season's Final Four classic that Notre Dame won on a last-second shot by Ogunbowale.

Cox, a two-time Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year and a third-team AP All-American this year, finished with eight points, eight rebounds and three blocks in 29 minutes.

Chloe Jackson leads Baylor with a 26-point game, including two clutch baskets late to win the game.

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He was emotional again only a few hours later when fans packed the Breslin Center to welcome the gritty Spartans back to campus. Can't get enough of Red Raiders' March Madness journey? "So, I basically have been coaching my whole life".

Baylor's two departing players, one who got to Baylor as a highly touted freshman and the other a graduate transfer who wanted to win a title, led the Lady Bears into their home arena for an on-campus celebration Monday.

"But from the time I left her on that floor to get to that huddle, I needed to regroup", Mulkey said. "The worst part of the game was Lauren Cox [getting hurt]", Mulkey said. After Ogunbowale and the Irish opened up their second consecutive game in dismal fashion, shooting 2 of 13 to start the game and finishing with just 12 points in the first quarter, that slump didn't last long. One, they're going to pass it to Arike and she's going to go one-on-one and score. How about another back-and-forth affair that featured nine ties and 28 lead changes and came down to the final minute? The Bears were able to melt away the remaining time. Time will put into context just what a spectacular four-person starting senior class Notre Dame is losing - much like how today we speak so wistfully about the 1988-89 Fighting Irish football teams that won one national title and just missed out on a second.

As discussed above, Turner anchored the Irish defense and was crucial to their success against UConn.

Arike Ogunbowale scored 23 points and Jessica Shepard added 20 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists in Notre Dame's 81-76 win over UConn on Friday night. "She's the reason why we're here". She still has to make those shots and she did. Brianna Turner had 15 points, 15 rebounds and five blocks.

"I was told she is the first kid from San Antonio to win a national championship, at least in years. They continue to encourage her and she came alive in the second half".

Mulkey lost a grandchild when her daughter Makenzie Fuller, Baylor's associate director of operations, gave birth to a stillborn child at the beginning of last season.

The game was also the first championship game since 2012 in which both coaches - Notre Dame's Muffet McGraw and Baylor's Kim Mulkey - were women. Baylor went on to shoot more than 65 percent from the floor as the Lady Bears raced to a 25-14 lead.