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Amna Subhan | | January 8, 2023

South Carolina outlasts Mississippi State, Miami (FL) upsets Virginia Tech on a loaded women's hoops Sunday

March Madness women's first bracket prediction of 2023

Sixteen ranked teams are in action this Sunday, and it's been an exciting one thus far with upsets and top teams tested. 

Here's what you need to know: 

No. 1 South Carolina outlasts Mississippi State to remain undefeated

South Carolina celebrates

South Carolina typically beats opponents by 38.3 (second in the nation), but the defending champs found themselves in a dogfight, pulling out a victory 58-51 over Mississippi State. 

The Gamecocks scored a season-low 58 points on just 30.3% shooting. Both South Carolina and the Bulldogs rank top-10 defensively with the Gamecocks sitting at the top. 

📊 RANKINGS: See the latest women's basketball AP poll

Zia Cooke recorded a game-high 16 points. Aliyah Boston added 12 points and 15 rebounds, six on the offensive end. As South Carolina missed 46 shots, the Gamecocks picked up 22 offensive rebounds turning that into 20 second-chance points. 

Mississippi State took an eight-point lead in the first quarter, and the Bulldogs hung around behind Jerkaila Jordan’s 13 points and Jessika Carter’s 11 second-half points. South Carolina sealed the victory with its first double-digit lead in the final seconds. 

Miami (FL) upsets No. 9 Virginia Tech 

For the second this week, Miami (FL) knocked off a ranked ACC opponent. The Hurricanes stunned No. 9 Virginia Tech 77-66 after defeating No. 22 North Carolina on Jan. 5. 

Jasmyne Roberts notched a game-high 23 points with five three-pointers. Haley Cavinder contributed 19 points and four assists. 

The Hurricanes pounded the paint, scoring 38 points in the key and controlled the tempo throughout leading the majority of the game. 

The Hokies fall to a second-unranked conference opponent, now 13-3 on the season. Next Miami travels to Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech faces Louisville. 

No. 17 Oklahoma pulls off scrappy win over No. 11 Iowa State

Oklahoma celebrates

In a back-and-forth affair that saw 25 lead changes between two rising Big 12 talents, Oklahoma bested Iowa State 82-79. 

After a tight first half, the Sooners looked to run away with it outscoring the Cyclones 24-12. Then Iowa State came roaring back to make it interesting in the fourth outdoing the Sooners 31-21 but it wasn’t enough to overcome the home team. 

Ana Llanusa scored a team-high 23 points — 16 in the second half. Llanusa made a huge three-pointer in the final minutes to put Oklahoma up 76-74 then assisted on a layup that pushed the Sooners ahead by one with less than 10 seconds left.  

💯 PERFECT RECORDS: The Undefeated teams in DI college basketball

Ashley Joens led all scorers with 27 points, 12-13 from the free throw line. Lexi Donarski also scored 20 points. Double-double machine Stephanie Soares, who leads Iowa State in rebounds and second in scoring, injured her knee in the opening minutes. 

The Cyclones fall to their third ranked opponent of the season and first in the Big 12. Meanwhile, Oklahoma picks up its first ranked win this season. 

No. 22 North Carolina takes down No. 4 Notre Dame 

North Carolina celebrates

North Carolina broke its four-game losing streak by handing Notre Dame just its second loss of the season. The Tar Heels pulled out a 60-50 win at home. 

Off the bench, Paulina Paris scored a game-high 16 points shooting 6-of-9 from the field and 3-of-4 from three-point land. Despite a rough 4-of-16 shooting night, Deja Kelly added 14 points. 

SCOREBOARD: Keep up with every women's basketball game

The Tar Heel defense held the Irish to just 28.1% shooting and a shocking 9.1% from the arc. Notre Dame averages 49.8% on field goals for a top-5 rank in the nation. The Irish also committed 19 turnovers which became seven North Carolina points. 

The Tar Heels tasted victory for the first time since Dec. 16 and picked up their first ACC victory, and an impressive one at that, over top-5 Notre Dame — ending the Irish’s six-game winning streak.

No. 15 Arizona holds on against No. 18 Oregon 

A ranked Pac-12 battle between Arizona and Oregon came down to the wire as neither team led more than double-digits throughout. The Wildcats finished off the Ducks 79-71. 

The Wildcats had five players in double figures. Madison Conner led the way with 16 points off the bench; the sophomore guard hit 3-3 from three and 7-7 free throws.

Oregon shot 53% from the field as the Wildcats was 40%, but Arizona made up the difference in hustle points. The Ducks turned the ball over 20 points which the Wildcats converted to 16 points. Arizona also pulled 15 offensive rebounds creating 14 second-chance points. 

The Ducks fall to 12-4 taking losses in three of its last five outings. Meanwhile, the Wildcats improve to 14-2 winning four of the last five meetings against the northern conference rival. 

No. 2 Stanford survives against Cal

California’s Golden Bears gave No. 2 Stanford quite a scare on Sunday, but the Cardinal prevailed in the end.

Stanford (16-1, 4-0 Pac-12) earned a 60-56 win over Cal, due in large part to the double-double from Cameron Brink. The junior forward paced the Cardinal with 25 points and a whopping 17 rebounds.

Senior guard followed with 12 points, which includes the go-ahead basket that put Stanford ahead for good inside of two minutes.

Leilani McIntosh led the Bears (10-5, 1-3 Pac-12) in scoring. The senior guard finished with 19 points.

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