College Football

UConn women romp, advance to Final Four

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UConn women romp, advance to Final Four

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Maya Moore is headed to the Final Four with a chance to pad perhaps the most impressive resume in the history of women's college basketball with yet another championship.

Connecticut's latest star is already a four-time All-American with 3,000 career points. Nice personal milestones for sure, but far from the biggest prize.

To her and the rest of the Huskies it's all about cutting down those nets in Indianapolis and locking up a third straight national title.

Moore scored 28 points, including the 3,000th of her career, to lead top-seeded UConn to a 75-40 win Tuesday night against Duke and a fourth straight trip to the Final Four.

"I don't think about it right now," Moore said about becoming the seventh Division I player to reach the 3,000-point mark. "Of course it's really exciting to be at a program where I've been able to flourish as an offensive player."

Coach Geno Auriemma wasn't surprised by his star's huge game.

"We did talk in the locker room that this was going to be a big night for Maya," Auriemma said. "You could just sense it. Too many games leading up to this where things didn't click for whatever reason. She doesn't let a lot of big games go by without going off in a couple of them."

The Huskies are two victories away from winning their third straight national championship, matching the school's own run from 2002-04 and Tennessee's from 1996-98.

Next up for Auriemma's current juggernaut is Notre Dame on Sunday in the national semifinals.

The two Big East teams are plenty familiar with each other, having played three times this season already. UConn won all of those matchups including a 73-64 victory in the Big East tournament championship game.

"It's going to be rough," Moore said. "We know each other so well and there are not a lot of surprises. It's going to be a battle to grind it out. We're representing well for our conference. It should be fun."

Once again rural Storrs, Conn., is the center of the college basketball world as both the men's and women's teams are in the Final Four. It's the third time in the past seven years that both programs have advanced this far with 2004 culminating in dual titles.

Throw in the football team reaching the BCS as Big East champions for the first time and its the first time ever one school has been in all three events.

"Take that!," Auriemma said.

Earlier in the day, Moore became only the second four-time AP All-American. She was a unanimous choice for the third straight year and has helped Connecticut to an unprecedented 149 victories while losing only three times.

Tuesday night she became the first D-I player to reach 3,000 points since Southwest Missouri State star Jackie Stiles in 2001.

Moore, who earned outstanding player of the regional honors, fell a bit short of achieving the school's first triple-double since Laura Lishness had one in the Big East tournament title game in 1989. Moore finished with 10 rebounds and seven steals.

Bria Hartley shoots past Duke's Jasmine Thomas and Haley Peters. Hartley scored 14 points.

"She does what she always does in big games lifting us on her back," said Auriemma.

Auriemma continue his success in his hometown. The Hall of Fame coach made his first Final Four in 1991 after playing at the regional at the Palestra.

"Here we are 20 years later and that team was pretty special because no one ever expected us to do something like that," he said. "What this team did in its own way with the schedule we played and what we did was an incredible accomplishment."

Auriemma also won his second national championship in Philadelphia in 2000.

Now the Huskies (36-1) are back in the Final Four for the fourth straight season and 12th time in the last 17 years.

The Blue Devils (32-4) faced questions leading up to the game on what they'd do differently than they did in a 36-point blowout loss to UConn on Jan. 31. In that game, the Huskies delivered an early knockout blow, scoring 23 of the first 25 points.

On Tuesday night, UConn got off to another quick start tallying 10 of the first 12 points. But this time Duke survived the early flurry, rallying back behind Shay Selby and Jasmine Thomas.

Selby's back-to-back 3-pointers cut the deficit to 17-14 midway through the half. Duke still trailed by three before UConn threw the knockout punch.

The Huskies scored the final seven points of the half, once again keyed by Moore. She hit a 3-pointer from the top of the key and then ended the period with a baseline jumper that made it 30-20.

Moore had 13 points, nine rebounds and five steals by the break.

The Huskies scored 22 of the first 25 points in the second half to put the game away. Moore had six of the nine points in the spurt, including an acrobatic tip-in off a missed shot that made it 39-22 with 15:56 left.

Her jumper later in the burst gave her 21 points and the Blue Devils still had 22.

Moore broke the 3,000-point milestone on a fouline jumper with 3:45 left in the game. The record basket was a sigh of relief for Huskies fans as Moore had left the game a few minutes earlier after hitting the floor hard. She slowly got up and jogged over to the bench as Auriemma called time out. Moore later said that she had just banged knees with a Duke player and was fine.

After riding the stationary bike on the sideline, Moore returned to get the milestone points.

Maya Moore's 28 points led her to become the seventh Division I player to reach the 3,000-point mark.

"That's the first time I did that with anyone to get something done like that," Auriemma said. "I'm glad we did it and it's out of the way rather than her having to answer about it all week."

Thomas finished her stellar career at Duke with an off-game. The senior guard had 17 points to lead Duke, but was just 7 for 22 from the field.

"Jasmine Thomas has been incredible," Duke coach Joanne P. McCallie said. "She was left a little bit on an island today with not much help offensively."

She was the only player in double figures for Duke, which shot 25 percent from the field compared to UConn's 59 percent.

The Blue Devils were trying to complete a sweep of the top two teams in the Big East conference. Duke knocked off DePaul 70-63 in the regional semifinals.

"We had a great season," Thomas said. "We had a young team and we grew together as a team. This team is going to bounce back from this."

Duke and Connecticut met once before in the regional final when the Blue Devils came away with a 63-61 victory in 2006 before falling in the NCAA championship game to Maryland.

Monique Currie, who played on that Duke team, was in the crowd Tuesday night sitting behind the Blue Devils bench. She hit four key free throws down the stretch to seal that victory over the Huskies.

It was the only previous NCAA tournament meeting between the teams.

-- The Associated Press

Boston College beats UConn 39-16 in wind and rain at Fenway Park

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Boston College beats UConn 39-16 in wind and rain at Fenway Park

BOSTON - AJ Dillon rushed for 200 yards and two touchdowns, breaking free on a 48-yard run and a 53-yard score on Saturday night to lead Boston College to a 39-16 victory over UConn on the wet and worn-out turf at Fenway Park.

Playing most of the game in a heavy rain, with groundskeepers patching the field most every timeout, the Eagles (6-5) qualified for a bowl game for the fourth time in five seasons. UConn (3-8) showed little offense until two late touchdowns cut into a 36-point deficit.

One week after BC quarterback Anthony Brown sustained a season-ending knee injury, Darius Wade completed 7 of 15 passes for 55 yards and a touchdown. He was helped by Dillon's running, another 107 yards rushing from Jon Hilliman and two long interception returns, including a 65-yard pick-six by Taj-Amir Torres.

Hilliman scored on 38- and 3-yard runs for BC, and Lukas Denis picked off David Pindell at the goal line and ran it back 56 yards to set up Dillon's second score.

BC led 39-3 in the fourth before Kevin Mensah ran 70 yards for a touchdown. Pindell followed by hitting Hergy Mayala for 43 yards with 4:15 left to make it 39-16.

Pindell finished with a career-high 241 yards on 14-for-33 passing, with three interceptions.

Although the century-old ballpark is less than four miles from BC's Chestnut Hill campus, UConn was officially the home team. But the opportunity to use the Red Sox clubhouse didn't help the Huskies avoid falling to 0-12-2 all-time against BC.

A 21-point favorite, BC trailed 3-0 after one quarter before Wade rolled to his left toward the Red Sox dugout and evaded tacklers long enough to find Chris Garrison in the end zone, right in front of where home plate would usually be.

Dillon dragged four defenders into the end zone - with another standing by and watching - on his 53-yard score in the second quarter, then added a 20-yard TD run in the third to make it 33-3. It was his second career 200-yard game and the first 200-yard rusher against UConn since Ray Rice did it for Rutgers in 2005.

THE TAKEAWAY

Boston College: The Eagles are bowl-eligible for the fourth time in coach Steve Addazio's five seasons in Chestnut Hill. He's the first BC coach to go to five bowl games in his first five seasons.

UConn: The Huskies picked up a nice check - $1.25 million - and some players got the thrill of playing in Fenway Park.

OUT FOR THE SEASON

Boston College announced before the game that defensive back Kamrin Moore will miss the rest of the season with a shoulder injury he sustained last week against North Carolina State. Moore, a captain, had started 23 consecutive games before missing Saturday night's game against UConn.

Moore finished with 140 tackles, six for a loss, and two interceptions.

KICKING WOES

Boston College missed three extra points and had a field goal blocked.

UP NEXT

Boston College: Wraps up the regular season against Syracuse on Saturday.

UConn: Finishes its season against Cincinnati next Saturday.

UMass wins a game on the road, hands BYU its 9th loss, 16-10

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UMass wins a game on the road, hands BYU its 9th loss, 16-10

PROVO, Utah - Andrew Ford fired a 40-yard touchdown pass to Andy Isabella and Logan Laurent kicked three field goals to stake UMass to a 16-0 lead at BYU and the Minutemen held on to post a 16-10 victory Saturday - earning a fourth win for the first time as an FBS school.

UMass (4-7) started playing FBS football in 2012 and never won more than three games nor won a road game against a team outside of the Mid-American Conference.

The victory ended both streaks.

The loss gives BYU nine losses for the third time in school history, matching 1949 and 1955. The Cougars have one game remaining next week in Honolulu against Hawaii with the prospect of their first 10-loss season looming.

Rhett Almond got BYU on the board with a 40-yard field goal with 1:35 left in the third quarter and Joe Critchlow hit Matt Bushman with a 6-yard TD pass in the final minute.

Critchlow was 21 of 45 passing for 257 yards, but the Cougars managed just 42 net rushing yards.