Haley Jones scores 24 points, including the last minute winning basket, as No. The tournament’s 1 overall seed scored a 66-65 win

Stanford players celebrate their 66-65 win over South Carolina in the Women’s Final Four in San Antonio Eric Gay / Associated Press

on Friday

SAN ANTONIO – Haley Jones had a huge hit, and Stanford was a little lucky to return to the national championship game for the first time in eleven years

Jones scored 24 points, including kicking off 32 seconds to help Stanford beat South Carolina 66-65 and advance to the women’s NCAA tournament championship game on Friday night

“It was a battle. It was a very tough game and we had to work very hard,” said Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer

It’s Stanford’s first trip to the title game since 2010, also held in San Antonio The Cardinal lost that competition to UConn, 53-47 It could be a rematch, depending on the outcome of the second Final Four game between Connecticut and Arizona

“We’ll see who we play against I think Connecticut is the favorite, “VanDerveer said.” We have to play really well no matter who we play I have no skeletons in the closet or ghosts This is a team that has confidence in itself “

The Cardinal led one and flipped it with 6 2 seconds left in midfield, but South Carolina’s Brea Beal missed a contested layup when Lexie Hull rushed back to get in her way. Aliyah Boston grabbed the rebound , but her attempt at kickback also ricocheted off the edge, sparking a wild cardinal celebration

VanDerveer, who won Pat Summitt with 1098 wins is looking for their third national championship and the first since 1992

“I just saw the ball bounce around and most of my teammates hit some bodies to open it. I just let it fly and said,” Please Jesus, go in, “and it did “said Jones, who was 11 for 14 off the field,” and then we just had to move on to the next game We don’t have time to talk ourselves into it We had to defend ourselves again””

On the next possession Boston had blocked their shot but got their own ricochet. Then, 15 seconds before the end, Destanni Henderson threw a pass that was stolen by Ashten Prechtel

After an inbounds game, Cameron Brink lost the ball on midfield against Boston, giving South Carolina the last two chances

“We got a pretty decent, two-look, layup, follow-up,” said South Carolina coach Dawn Staley. “We just fell short. We lost the way we did it, and it is heartbreaking ”

Jones and Fran Belibi ran to Boston, which was still under the basket, and they both hugged her in a long hug after the buzzer sounded

“Me, Fran and Aliyah, we are best friends We text every day We talk all the time We love to compete I think we were so close together to make us more competitive,” said Jones “I mean it was a hard-fought fight. She played great. We both played great. We just wanted to give her the respect she deserves.”

Henderson scored six direct points to give the Gamecocks (26-5) a lead of 65-64 by 38.8 seconds left. They had a three-point game and a 3-pointer

With a deficit of 15-6 in the middle of the first quarter, Stanford scored the next nine points to advance the game into the second round. The Gamecocks missed their last six shots of the quarter and were 4:48 for the final goalless

“We know basketball teams have runs, so we can’t let the first quarter or the first five minutes run the entire game,” said Hull, who had 18 points and 13 rebounds

Brink came into play after pinching her leg in the Elite Eight win against Louisville. She had six points and six blocks

Jones hit the first 3-pointer of the second half for Stanford to break the record for the most 3-pointers in the NCAA tournament Cardinal’s place in the five games, making them one more than UConn in 2015

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World News – USA – NCAA womens basketball: Stanford holds South Carolina back and advances to the finals

Source: https://www.pressherald.com/2021/04/02/ncaa-womens-basketball-stanford-holds-off-south-carolina-advances-to-final/