- Associated Press - Thursday, February 18, 2016

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Tiffany Mitchell scored 19 points and No. 3 South Carolina wrapped up its third straight Southeastern Conference title with a 61-51 victory over Georgia on Thursday night.

The Gamecocks (25-1, 13-0 SEC) had earned a share of the league crown last Monday night with a 62-56 win at Tennessee. This victory clinched it outright and kept South Carolina on track, with three games remaining, for a perfect run through the SEC.

Not that it was easy.

The Lady Bulldogs (19-7, 7-6) are the SEC’s top defensive team and kept the high-scoring Gamecocks on their heels most of the contest.

A’ja Wilson had 16 points, nine rebounds and two blocks for the Gamecocks.

Tiaria Griffin led Georgia with 22 points and eight rebounds.

NO. 2 NOTRE DAME 86, WAKE FOREST 52

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) - Brianna Turner had 19 points and 11 rebounds and Notre Dame remained undefeated in the Atlantic Coast Conference by beating Wake Forest.

The Fighting Irish (25-1, 13-0 ACC) won their 18th straight.

Ariel Stephenson scored 17 and Elisa Penna had 10 for the Deacons (15-12, 6-8), who shot 37.7 percent (20 of 53) and made just 5 of 17 3-pointers to snap a four-game winning streak.

Turner had 14 points in the first half as the Fighting Irish built a 41-22 halftime lead.

NO. 5 OHIO STATE 96, NEBRASKA 70

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Alexa Hart had 18 points to lead five players in double figures and Ohio State cruised to a win over Nebraska.

Ohio State led for nearly 39 minutes and extended its winning streak to 10 games. It maintained its one-game lead in the Big Ten standings over No. 6 Maryland.

Kelsey Mitchell and Ameryst Alston scored 16 points apiece for the Buckeyes (22-4, 14-1 Big Ten).

Jessica Shepard led Nebraska (17-9, 8-7) with 20 points and eight rebounds.

NO. 23 SYRACUSE 83, NO. 10 FLORIDA STATE 73

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) - Alexis Peterson had 17 points and Brianna Butler added 16 to lead a quartet of Syracuse players in double figures, and the Orange defeated Florida State.

Brittney Sykes and Taylor Ford chipped in with 15 apiece for Syracuse (21-6, 11-3 ACC), which won its seventh straight game. Briana Day had 11 rebounds. The loss snapped an 11-game winning streak for the Seminoles (21-5, 11-2).

Adut Bulgak, who left the game with an apparent knee injury with 8:47 to go, led the Seminoles with 23 points, including 5 of 7 on 3s.

NO. 11 LOUISVILLE 74, VIRGINIA 59

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Myisha Hines-Allen had 19 of her 22 points in the second half and grabbed 11 rebounds as Louisville pulled away for a win over Virginia.

Mariya Moore had 16 of her 18 points in the first half and added seven rebounds and five assists for the Cardinals (21-6, 12-1 ACC), who led 37-33 at the half.

Faith Randolph had 17 points for Virginia (14-13, 4-9).

NO. 12 TEXAS A&M; 68, LSU 54

COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) - Courtney Williams scored 17 points and Texas A&M; pulled away in the fourth quarter to beat LSU.

Texas A&M; (19-7, 9-4 Southeastern Conference) has won four straight and has a one-game lead over Mississippi State, Florida and Auburn for second place in the conference.

Rina Hill had 14 points and Alexis Hyder 13 to lead LSU (8-18, 2-11), which has lost 10 of its last 11 games.

Texas A&M; built a 10-point lead at halftime and led 48-39 with three minutes remaining in the third quarter. From there the Aggies went cold, missing their next seven shots, allowing the Tigers to pull to 48-45.

NO. 16 KENTUCKY 83, NO. 14 MISSISSIPPI STATE 60

STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) - Maci Morris scored 17 points, Makayla Epps had 16 and Kentucky took charge in the third quarter and rolled Mississippi State.

Reserves Taylor Murray and Alexis Jennings combined for 25 points, going 10 for 11 from the foul line, for the Wildcats (18-6, 7-6 SEC), who won their third straight.

The starters for Mississippi State (21-6, 8-5) combined to go 6 of 26 from the field, including 0 of 3 from 3-point range, and 3 of 6 from the foul line and none reached double figures. Breanna Richardson led the Bulldogs with 13 points.

NO. 22 FLORIDA 79, VANDERBILT 67

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) - Eleanna Christinaki scored 22 points and Florida defeated Vanderbilt to reach 20 victories.

Haley Lorenzen added 12 points and Ronni Williams, Carlie Needles and Simone Westbrook 10 apiece for the Gators (20-6, 8-5 SEC).

The big difference was at the free-throw line: The Gators were 22 of 34 to 8 of 15 for Vanderbilt.

The Commodores (15-11, 4-9), who have lost six straight, were led by 17 points from Marqu’es Webb and 16 from Rachel Bell, who made all four of her 3-point attempts.

NO. 24 TENNESSEE 57, MISSISSIPPI 51

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Kortney Dunbar made two critical baskets in the last two minutes as Tennessee rallied to beat Mississippi after blowing a nine-point, fourth-quarter lead.

Dunbar hit a layup to put the Lady Volunteers ahead for good with 1:36 left.

Bashaara Graves had 15 points and 12 rebounds as Tennessee (16-10, 7-6 SEC) beat Ole Miss (10-16, 2-11) for the 28th consecutive time.

Shandricka Sessom scored 21 for Mississippi, which has lost seven straight.

NO. 25 MICHIGAN STATE 70, RUTGERS 67

PISCATAWAY, N.J. (AP) - Aerial Powers scored 27 points with 14 rebounds and Michigan State beat Rutgers.

Powers was 15 of 17 at the line for the Spartans (19-7, 10-5 Big Ten).

Tyler Scaife led Rutgers (16-11, 7-8) with 22 points

Rutgers led most of the second half, but a 21-10 Michigan State run over 6:25 in the fourth quarter drew things even with 1:08 left.

Briyona Canty hit a jumper to pull Rutgers within two, but Kennedy Johnson made 1 of 2 free throws and Rutgers never got off a final shot.


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