NCAA

Stanford women top West Virginia, 72-55

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Stanford women top West Virginia, 72-55

BOX SCORE

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer glanced at the stat sheet and gushed as she examined Amber Orrange's solid all-around game."She played like a senior, forget freshman," the Hall of Famer said.Orrange had 18 points, seven rebounds and five assists to lead the top-seeded Cardinal to a 72-55 victory over West Virginia in the second round of the women's NCAA tournament on Monday night."She was doing stuff, just under control. What, five assists? How many turnovers did she have? No turnovers, against that?" VanDerveer said, referencing West Virginia's physical defense. "She was a player. She wasn't a freshman. Nothing was holding her back today."Orrange was aggressive from the outset, scoring eight of the Cardinal's first 12 points, and had 12 by halftime. She set career highs for points and rebounds, but said she was merely taking what she was given.Oh, and she wanted to show the Mountaineers that she could handle their physical play, too."We knew coming in that they wanted to be physical, but we also wanted to make the first punch before they could hit us first, and I think we did that," Orrange said.Nnemkadi Ogwumike added 16 points and Chiney Ogwumike finished with 13 for the top-seeded Cardinal (33-1), who easily stretched their school-record winning streak to 30.Stanford put together a 17-0 run to take a 33-12 lead, and the advantage never dipped below 16 again. Orrange responded with consecutive baskets when Nnemkadi Ogwumike went to the bench with two fouls in the middle of the game-changing run."I call her my little knife," Nnemkadi Ogwumike said, laughing at herself while praising Orrange. "She slices and dices."Ayana Dunning led the Mountaineers (24-10) with 14 points and Asya Buassie had 11, but West Virginia shot just 31 percent."When they started scoring, our girls started pressing on offense," Mountaineers coach Mike Carey said. "We started taking some shots we shouldn't take."The Cardinal were leading 16-12 when Nnemkadi Ogwumike's two free throws sparked the 17-0 blitz. West Virginia went more than six minutes without scoring and trailed 33-14 after Dunning finally broke the drought with a 15-foot jumper 5:01 before halftime.The only bright spot for the Mountaineers during the big run occurred when Nnemkadi Ogwumike, a national player of the year contender, picked up her second foul and went to the bench. But Orrange made a jumper and a driving layup on the next two possessions for the Cardinal, who led 38-21 at halftime.The Mountaineers' plan to slow down the Ogwumike sisters might have been effective, guard Christal Caldwell said, had Orrange not caught them off guard."It made her have to be a lot more aggressive," Caldwell said.Ogwumike went back to the bench after drawing her third foul with 16:08 to play and the Cardinal ahead 44-26. Ogwumike's absence slowed Stanford's offense, but West Virginia still struggled to score. The Mountaineers missed 10 of their first 12 shots after halftime, including several open looks, and finished 4 for 18 on 3-pointers.Stanford's bid for a fifth straight trip to the Final Four now moves on to the Fresno Regional, where it will face South Carolina on Saturday. The Gamecocks advanced with a 72-61 victory over Purdue.The Mountaineers, meanwhile, continued a trend under Carey in which they are a perfect 6-0 in first-round NCAA tournament games, but 0-6 in the second round.In each of the last two seasons, they have been knocked out by a team featuring one of the top players in the country. Last year, it was Baylor and Brittney Griner.

Louisville has 'effectively fired' head coach Rick Pitino

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AP

Louisville has 'effectively fired' head coach Rick Pitino

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Louisville has placed coach Rick Pitino and athletic director Tom Jurich on administrative leave amid a federal bribery investigation.

Jurich is on paid leave, while Pitino is on unpaid leave. The coach’s attorney, Steve Spence, told the Courier-Journal Wednesday that Louisville has “effectively fired” Pitino.

Pitino’s exit comes after the school acknowledged on Tuesday that the men’s program is part of a federal investigation into alleged bribery of recruits. The 65-year-old coach was not named in the indictment that resulted in the arrest of 10 people including four assistant coaches at other schools and an Adidas executive.

It is the latest black eye for the Cardinals program. Pitino and Louisville are in the middle of appealing NCAA sanctions following an embarrassing sex scandal.

Jurich has supported Pitino through his transgressions during the athletic director’s nearly 20-year tenure at the university.

Cal fights USC into fourth quarter, can't complete the upset

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AP

Cal fights USC into fourth quarter, can't complete the upset

BOX SCORE

BERKELEY -- Stephen Carr ran for a fourth-quarter touchdown two plays after Southern California's defense forced one of its six turnovers and the fifth-ranked Trojans won their 13th straight game, 30-20 over California on Saturday.

USC (4-0, 2-0 Pac-12) has dominated the series with its in-state rival by winning 14 straight against the Golden Bears (3-1, 0-1), but this was one of the tightest matchups in years as the game was tied early in the fourth quarter.

Sam Darnold threw for 223 yards and two touchdowns for the Trojans but also had an interception and was under pressure for much of the day.

It was the defense that stepped up for USC, intercepting a pass from Ross Bowers in the first quarter to set up a field goal and then delivering the big play early in the fourth quarter after Chase McGrath gave the Trojans a 16-13 lead with his third field goal of the game.

Josh Fatu knocked the ball out of Bowers' hand and Uchenna Nwosu recovered the fumble at the 3. Carr ran it in two plays later from the 2 to make it 23-13.

Ykili Ross then intercepted Bowers' pass on the next possession, setting up Darnold's 4-yard TD pass to Deontay Burnett that put away the game.

Bowers finished 22 for 50 for 303 yards with one touchdown, four interceptions and two lost fumbles.

THE TAKEAWAY

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA: The Trojans struggled for much of the game without starting RB Ronald Jones (ankle) and WR Steven Mitchell (groin) but managed to pull away late in their first road game of the season.

CALIFORNIA: The Bears used an improved defense to start 3-0 under first-year coach Justin Wilcox but this was supposed to be the test of how far they had come. Cal showed plenty by sticking with a national title contender for three quarters. A sequence on the opening drive of the second will haunt the Bears. Patrick Laird dropped a potential TD in the end zone and Matt Anderson then missed a 29-yard field goal that kept the game tied at 13.

POLL IMPLICATIONS

A win against an unranked team should do little to alter USC's poll position.

UP NEXT

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA: Visits No. 18 Washington State on Friday.

CALIFORNIA: Visits No. 24 Oregon on Saturday.