Missouri 51

(21-10, 10-6 Big 12)

Virginia Tech 82

(21-9, 6-8 ACC)

    7:00 PM ET, March 19, 2006

    Bryce Jordan Center, State College, Pennsylvania

    1 2 T
    MIZZ 25 2651
    VT 32 5082

    Top Performers

    Missouri: L. Bond 13 Pts, 5 Reb

    Virginia Tech: D. Chriss 21 Pts, 5 Reb

    Hokies hammer Tigers in lopsided 7-10 game

    STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) -- Virginia Tech used experience to beat back Missouri every time its lead was threatened.

    The Hokies' four senior starters -- who have been to the NCAA Tournament every year -- played with poise and ran a crisp offense in the opener to hold off Missouri 82-51 Sunday night.

    Dawn Chriss had 21 points, and fellow senior Carrie Mason scored key second-half baskets as the Hokies pulled away to a first-round victory.

    Another senior, Kerri Gardin, had 17 points and 13 rebounds. Kirby Copeland, a junior, added 10 for Virginia Tech -- the No. 7 seed in the Bridgeport Regional. Next up is second-seeded Connecticut.

    Chriss, Mason, Gardin and the fourth senior starter, Megan Finnerty, won a first-round game for the first time since 2003 when the Hokies beat Georgia Tech.

    Missouri, which never led, cut a 15-point first-half deficit to 45-40 with about 13 minutes remaining when LaToya Bond made two free throws.

    Virginia Tech, paced by a balanced offense all season, took over from there. Mason made a 3-pointer, scored on a layup after a steal, and connected with Copeland for another basket on a break to give the Hokies a 13-point lead just 4 minutes later.

    Finerty got in on the fun, too, having connected with Gardin on some nice feeds in the post. The starters got an early rest and watched the last couple of minutes from the bench with the Hokies ahead by 30 points.

    Mason took a seat to cheers from a contingent of Hokies fans wearing orange right behind the basket. The 5-foot-7 guard hails from Seneca, Pa., a small town about 2½ hours from State College.

    Bond led Missouri with 13 points but shot just 3-of-14 from the field. Carlynn Savant added nine points and eight rebounds for the Tigers, who had 21 turnovers compared to 10 for Virginia Tech.

    The loss spoiled a comeback campaign for Missouri, which finished 21-10 after going 11-18 last season.

    The Tigers were picked in the preseason to finish 10th in the Big 12 Conference, but ended up a surprising fourth. Coach Cindy Stein hoped that she could also surprise in the NCAAs after her team was selected as a 10th seed.

    The game was close early and the teams traded misses before the Hokies went on a run. Chriss started the spurt with a 15-foot jumper, and Copeland made a layup for a 15-4 lead before the Tigers called timeout.

    Missouri got within 30-25 late in the first half and narrowed the deficit to five points early in the second half before Virginia Tech pulled away.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 51 82
    FG Made-Attempted 18-57 (.316) 35-68 (.515)
    3P Made-Attempted 7-16 (.438) 2-4 (.500)
    FT Made-Attempted 8-12 (.667) 10-14 (.714)
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 17 (0/0) 12 (0/0)
    Largest Lead 0 32

    Game Leaders

    PointsL. Bond 13D. Chriss 21
    ReboundsC. Savant 8K. Gardin 13


    » Mar 19, 2006 @VT 82, MIZZ 51Recap | Box Score