No. 22 Nebraska upends No. 24 Michigan St. 76-56
LINCOLN, Neb. -- Jordan Hooper scored 18 points and Rachel Theriot had nine with 12 assists as No. 22 Nebraska rolled past No. 24 Michigan State 76-56 on Saturday.
The Cornhuskers (17-5, 7-3 Big Ten) shot 46.8 percent from the field and outrebounded Michigan State 38-31. Tear'a Laudermill scored 15 points and Emily Cady had 13 with nine boards and five assists.
Michigan State (16-8, 8-3) was held to 22 of 56 shooting (39.3 percent). Aerial Powers paced the Spartans with 17 points and seven rebounds.
The Spartans jumped out to a 14-6 lead six minutes in, but Nebraska stormed ahead with a 22-0 surge sparked by a layup, three-point play and a jumper by Cady.
Branndais Agee ended the Spartans' nearly 10-minute scoring drought with two jumpers in a row, but the Cornhuskers rolled to a 40-20 halftime advantage.
Nebraska coasted in the second half, as Michigan State couldn't pull closer than 17.
Holmes leads No. 17 West Virginia past Kansas State 84-44
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. -- Bria Holmes had a career-high 31 points and Taylor Palmer surpassed the 1,000 point-mark on Saturday as No. 17 West Virginia defeated Kansas 84-44.
Holmes reached the 30-point mark on a pair of free throws with 3:34 left and Palmer achieved her career milestone on a 3-pointer with 2:52 left in the first half. Palmer was also the last Mountaineer to score 30 or more when she had 30 against Oklahoma on Jan. 3, 2013.
The Mountaineers ended the first half on a 26-5 run to lead 43-24 at halftime. Holmes made 5 of 8 3-pointers and had 19 points before the break.
Christal Caldwell added 17 points and Palmer finished with 13 for WVU (20-3, 9-2 Big 12) which finished 11 of 19 from 3-point range.
Leticia Romero scored 12 points for Kansas State (9-13, 3-8) which shot just 26.7 percent from the field.
No. 20 Gonzaga buries Loyola Marymount 88-51
SPOKANE, Wash. -- Haiden Palmer hit 10 of 15 shots and scored 27 points as No. 20 Gonzaga won its 12th consecutive by blitzing Loyola Marymount 88-51 on Saturday.
Since beating the Lions 91-82 in overtime on Jan. 23, the Bulldogs (22-3, 12-1 West Coast) have won by 30, 52, 35, 35 and 37 points.
The Bulldogs used a 12-0 run to take a 25-5 lead at the 11:25 mark. It was 46-20 at halftime when the Bulldogs shot 53.3 percent, including 5 of 10 3-pointers. The Lions were at 22.7 percent. Loyola had eight rebounds, Gonzaga eight offensive rebounds and 23 overall.
Taylor Anderson led the Lions (7-16, 4-8) with 11 points. LMU made 14 of 28 shots in the second half and still fell further behind.
Gonzaga now has a three-game lead against Saint Mary's and BYU with five games to play to win their 10th WCC title in a row.
No. 21 Middle Tennessee beats Rice 65-54
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. -- Ebony Rowe scored 12 points and added 12 rebounds as No. 21 Middle Tennessee defeated Rice 65-54 on Saturday afternoon.
Rowe recorded her 19th double-double of the season and 72nd of her career. Laken Leonard came off the bench to add 13 points. The Blue Raiders were coming off their first conference loss, 68-56 against Southern Miss on Wednesday.
Middle Tennessee (19-4, 8-1 Conference USA) led by 10 at the break and held the Owls to their lowest-scoring first half of the season. The Blue Raiders shot 46 percent from the floor in the first half, compared to Rice's 23 percent.
Middle Tennessee led by 21 points midway through the second half, but the Owls responded with an 18-6 run to cut the lead to single digits with 3:58 remaining.
Jessica Kuster scored 15 points to lead Rice (10-12, 3-6), Maya Hawkins finished with 13 and Megan Palmer added 11.