The NCAA's top seeds will look to avoid a dreaded upset during the second round of the women's tournament.
Notre Dame, Tennessee, Duke, Stanford and Baylor are among college basketball's top squads suiting up for subregional play on Monday night. While the sturdier squads often prevail, no team can rest easy during the chaotic tournament.
Here's a look at all of Monday's madness to kick-start the second round, which has Duke on its heel during the early slate of action. Also take a look at Tuesday's schedule for more second-round matchups.
|6:35 p.m.||(7) DePaul vs. (2) Duke||ESPN 2||DePaul 74, Duke 65|
|6:35 p.m.||(1) Notre Dame vs. (9) Arizona State||ESPN 2||Notre Dame 84, Arizona State 67|
|6:40 p.m.||(6) Syracuse vs. (3) Kentucky||ESPN 2||Kentucky 64, Syracuse 59|
|6:40 p.m.||(10) Florida State vs. (2) Stanford||ESPN 2||Stanford 63, Florida State 44|
|9:05 p.m.||(1) Tennessee vs. (8) St. John's||ESPN 2||Tennessee 67, St. John's 51|
|9:10 p.m.||(12) BYU vs. (4) Nebraska||ESPN 2||BYU 80, Nebraska 76|
|9:10 p.m.||(5) Oklahoma State vs. (4) Purdue||ESPN 2||Oklahoma State 73, Purdue 66|
|9:15 p.m.||(7) California vs. (2) Baylor||ESPN 2||Baylor 75, California 56|
|7 p.m.||No. 1 Connecticut vs. No. 9 St. Joseph's||ESPN 2|
|7 p.m.||No. 4 Maryland vs. No. 5 Texas||ESPN 2|
|7 p.m.||No. 4 North Carolina vs. No. 5 Michigan State||ESPN 2|
|7 p.m.||No. 3 Penn State vs. No. 11 Florida||ESPN 2|
|9:30 p.m.||No. 3 Louisville vs. No. 6 Iowa||ESPN 2|
|9:30 p.m.||No. 2 West Virginia vs. No. 7 LSU||ESPN 2|
|9:30 p.m.||No. 1 South Carolina vs. No. 9 Oregon State||ESPN 2|
|9:30 p.m.||No. 3 Texas A&M vs. No. 11 James Madison||ESPN 2|
For the full bracket, check out NCAA.com
DePaul 74, Duke 65
DePaul cemented a devastation week for Duke basketball by knocking off the Blue Devils in a 74-65 stunner.
In the battles of satanic blue mascots, guards Megan Rogowski and Megan Podkowa led the Blue Demons with 22 and 18 points, respectively, to fend off the injury-depleted Blue Devils, who fostered eight active players.
Duke gave away 21 turnovers, 16 of which came from its three starting guards. It was enough to offset a masterful defensive performance from forward Elizabeth Williams, who nearly garnered a rare triple-double with 12 points, 10 rebounds and seven blocks.
Bloquin's Matt Zemek foreboded a possible upset before it occurred.
DePaul is having to play at Duke, and this is a 7-2 game, but remember Duke is shorthanded (injuries). Would still be a coup 4 DePaul #ncaaw— Matt Zemek (@MattZemek) March 25, 2014
DePaul head coach Doug Bruno also spoke confidently of his team's chances before the game began. Per the Associated Press:
I definitely think we're prepared to play against this level of competition. We have to go out and do what we do. We have to play our game. And if we play our game, I think we can definitely make a game of this.
Most coaches would say that regardless of its veracity, but both squads entered the match with a 28-6 record. Yet Duke's sturdy reputation as a tournament juggernaut guided its way to a higher seed and favorite status.
DePaul now awaits the winner of Tuesday's contest between No. 3 Texas A&M and No. 11 James Madison.
Stanford 63, Florida State 44
No. 2 Stanford will advance to the Sweet 16 after securing a 63-44 victory over No. 10 Florida State.
Forward Chiney Ogwumike led the way with a dominating performance for the Cardinal, registering 21 points and nine rebounds during the victory. Meanwhile, nobody on the Seminoles posted a double-digit point tally.
Florida State suffered through a dreadful shooting display, going 18-of-58 (31 percent) while making a mere three of its 20 three-point attempts. Ogwumike's 8-of-11 performance guided Stanford to a much more efficient 48.9 field-goal percentage.
Coming off its second consecutive 19-point victory, Stanford will look to keep cruising through its region against the winner of No. 3 Penn State and No. 11 Florida.
Notre Dame 84, Arizona State 67
Notre Dame remains undefeated after handily besting Arizona State, 84-67.
Natalie Achonwa dominated inside the paint, making eight of her 10 shots to earn 25 points and 11 rebounds. Kayla McBride joined the two-headed attack with 22 points and nine assists during another basketball clinic from the Fighting Irish.
During its perfect 34-0 start, Notre Dame has obtained 31 of those victories by at least 10 points. The Sun Devils held their own, trailing by eight points at halftime, but they were no match against the undefeated powerhouse.
Although ASU entered the tournament with a three-game losing streak, the No. 9-ranked squad is no pushover. Except for a team like Notre Dame, who can apparently push anyone around.
Purdue and Oklahoma State are likely fighting for the team to become Notre Dome's next victim during the Sweet 16.
Kentucky 64, Syracuse 59
In the closest contest of the night's opening batch of games, No. 3 Kentucky held on to fend off No. 6 Syracuse.
Bria Goss found her way to the free-throw line 12 times, and the guard converted 11 of those attempts to engulf her total to 17 points. DeNesha Stallworth and Kastine Evans collected 13 and 11 points, respectively, during the Wildcats' win.
Sloppy ball-handling derailed Syracuse's chances, as the Orange forked over 23 turnovers during the evening. Those extra giveaways made the difference during the five-point defeat.
Kentucky is now likely rooting for No. 7 California to knock out the Baylor Bears so it can avoid facing the Notre Dame region's No. 2 seed in the next round.
BYU 80, Nebraska 76
The scoring came in bunches between the Cougars and Cornhuskers, as a number of players reached double-figure scoring nights for both sides.
All in all, the game was surprisingly close considering the Cougars shot 50.9 percent from the field while the Cornhuskers shot just 37.9 percent. However, the Cougars had 14 turnovers, while Nebraska went 20-of-23 from the free-throw line.
All in all, nine total players scored at least 10 points in this game. Nebraska's Tear'a Laudermill and Jordan Hoopers scored a combined 42 points thanks to a combined 12-of-12 shooting from the charity stripe.
Meanwhile, Morgan Bailey led the Cougars with 18 points, while Jennifer Hamson had 15 points, 14 rebounds and four blocks down low. Thanks to a hot shooting night all-around, BYU was able to advance to the Sweet 16, where they will play the winner of Connecticut and Saint Joseph's.
Tennessee 67, St. John's 51
The No. 1 Tennessee Lady Volunteers were able to avoid the possibility of an upset on Monday thanks to a strong performance against the St. John's Red Storm winning 67-51.
According to Jeff Archer from WVLT-TV, Tennessee is heading to its 32nd Sweet 16 in 33 years, showing just how consistent their program has been for so long.
Tennessee beats St. John's 67-51. The Lady Vols are in the Sweet 16 for the 32nd time in 33 years. Let that sink in for a moment.— Jeff Archer (@jeffarcherwvlt) March 25, 2014
It was the strong defense that helped the Lady Vols to victory, holding their opponents to just 35.2 percent shooting. Excluding Aliyyah Handford's performance, as she scored 23 points on 9-of-19 shooting, the Red Storm would have scored just 28 points while shooting just 28.6 percent from the floor.
Cierra Burdick's 21 points and 11 boards was a big reason for the win, as she made an impressive 10 of her 14 shots. Meighan Simmons and Isabelle Harrison had strong games to, with Simmons scoring 17 points while Harrison had a double-double on 10 points and 11 rebounds.
The Lady Vols will either play Texas or Maryland in the Sweet 16, but they'll likely be favorites all the way to the Final Four as the region's top seed.
Baylor 75, California 56
The California Golden Bears were looking to take down one of the best teams in the country in the Baylor Lady Bears, but it just wasn't going to happen, as they lost 75-56 thanks to a 41-point second half from Baylor.
At the end of the first half, the Bears led by just one at 34-33. But Baylor got hot in the second half, outscoring the Golden Bears 41-23. That scoring outburst included a late 13-2 run to officially put California away.
California's Afure Jemerigbe and Brittany Boyd combined for 32 points on Monday, but Baylor had its own stars in Odyssey Sims and Nina Davis. Sims really filled up the stat sheet, putting up 27 points, eight rebounds, six assists and three steals while Davis had 13 points and six boards on 5-of-9 shooting.
The Lady Bears will be playing the Wildcats in the Sweet 16, and the winner will likely play the currently-undefeated Fighting Irish in the Elite Eight.
Oklahoma State 73, Purdue 66
Thanks to a strong first half, the Oklahoma State Cowgirls were able to beat the Purdue Boilermakers 73-66.
The Cowgirls weren't afraid to get to the free-throw line, taking a total of 32 attempts from the charity stripe and making 22 of them. Sophomore guard Brittney Martin is only 6'0'', but that didn't keep her from recording 20 points and 20 rebounds in the game, simply dominating on the glass.
LaShawn Jones and Roshunda Johnson were effective as well, with each of them putting up 16 points in the game. For the Boildermakers, Whitney Bays had a great game off of the bench, putting up 21 points along with 13 rebounds and two assists.
With the win, the Cowgirls will be playing their toughest game all season against the Fighting Irish, so they may not last much longer in this year's tournament unless they pull off the huge upset.