(4) Baylor 77

(26-9, 9-7 Big 12)

(1) Tennessee 62

(32-3, 15-1 SEC)

    12:04 PM ET, March 27, 2010

    FedEx Forum, Memphis, Tennessee

    1 2 T
    #4BAY 30 4777
    #1TENN 28 3462

    Top Performers

    Baylor: B. Griner 27 Pts, 7 Reb, 2 Ast, 10 Blk

    Tennessee: S. Stricklen 18 Pts, 5 Reb, 4 Ast, 1 Stl

    Griner has 27 points, 10 blocks; Lady Vols shoot just 32.9 percent in loss

    Associated Press

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Freshman sensation Brittney Griner has grown up a lot this season -- just ask Tennessee.

    Voepel: Baylor shines

    Kim Mulkey knew her Lady Bears would be a good team some day. That day arrived Saturday in the Sweet 16 as Baylor toppled No. 1 seed Tennessee. Story
    • Voepel: Season ends early for Lady Vols

    Griner scored 27 points and blocked 10 shots, leading fourth-seeded Baylor to a 77-62 win over the top-seeded Lady Vols on Saturday to advance to the NCAA tournament regional finals.

    "She was the X factor," said Tennessee coach Pat Summitt, whose team was taken out in the first round last season.

    Baylor's only other appearance in the round of eight was in 2005, the same year it won the national championship. The Lady Bears (26-9) will face No. 2 seed Duke on Monday night.

    Fast Facts

    • Tennesse failed to reach the Elite Eight for the second straight season after playing in seven consecutive regional finals from 2002-08. The Lady Vols missed the regional final in consecutive seasons for the first time.

    • Baylor freshman Brittney Griner followed up her 14-block performance against Georgetown with 27 points, seven rebounds and 10 blocks. She has 26 blocks in three tournament games (four shy of the tournament record) and is the only player to have 10-plus blocks in multiple tournament games in her career.

    • It's the first time since the women's tournament began in 1982 that the Tennessee men advanced further than the women in the NCAA tournament.

    -- ESPN Stats & Information

    The Lady Vols' loss spoiled the highly anticipated matchup between Tennessee and Connecticut, which could have happened in this year's national semifinals. The Lady Vols, who lost in the first round last season, haven't missed out on back-to-back Final Fours since 1993-94.

    Tennessee (32-3) successfully limited the 6-foot-8 Griner in its 74-65 win over Baylor in the first game of the season but couldn't do it again even with as many as four players on her at a time. Griner hit several shots while double-teamed or passed to an open Lady Bears teammate for an easy layup.

    "You're watching a phenom out here play above the rim," Baylor coach Kim Mulkey said. "That's what needs to be written in every article from this day forward, because she's such a sweet child as you can see."

    Griner had been somewhat tentative on offense since she was suspended for two games after throwing a punch against a Texas Tech player in early March. She was back to her dominant self on both ends of the court.

    "I just knew I had to come out and play my game and go back to the old Brittney," Griner said.

    Griner's 26 blocks in the NCAA tournament ranks her second in history. Duke's Alison Bales holds the NCAA tournament record with 30 in 2006, and Connecticut's Rebecca Lobo's 22 ranks third.

    The teams went back and forth throughout the first half and early in the second, trading the lead 10 times and tying four times. With both 6-foot-6 Kelley Cain and 6-foot-3 Alyssia Brewer on the floor to guard Griner, Tennessee found some success inside and was up 55-50 with just under eight minutes left.

    The Lady Vol orange-clad crowd fell silent as Griner hit back-to-back layups and had a three-point play as part of a 21-1 run as Tennessee's defense unraveled.

    Tennessee (32-3) turned to its shooters in desperation. Though Angie Bjorklund and Shekinna Stricklen managed to hit jumpers in traffic and knock down a few 3s in the first half, they missed left and right in the second half.

    The Lady Vols managed to hit only 32.9 percent, only slightly better than their season-worst 32.8 percent against Stanford, and finished with 22 paint points. The Lady Vols allowed the Lady Bears 49.1 percent shooting -- a season high for a Tennessee opponent -- and 36 paint points.

    "I can't believe it. I'm just really excited that to get to the Elite Eight we had to go through the best, and the best in this region was Tennessee," Baylor's Morghan Medlock said.

    Stricklen led Tennessee with 18 points, and Bjorklund added 12.

    "I think anytime you play against a 6-8 player, it's is going to be tough to shoot over her," Bjorklund said. "At the same time, I thought when our posts did have the ball they did a good job. Going against her, we just needed to give the posts more touches."

    Tennessee fell to 23-5 in regional semifinal games.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 77 62
    FG Made-Attempted 26-53 (.491) 25-76 (.329)
    3P Made-Attempted 3-7 (.429) 5-16 (.313)
    FT Made-Attempted 22-25 (.880) 7-15 (.467)
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 12 (0/0) 17 (0/0)
    Largest Lead 16 8

    Game Leaders

    PointsB. Griner 27S. Stricklen 18
    ReboundsM. Medlock 11K. Cain 10
    AssistsK. Griffin 7A. Bjorklund 7
    StealsK. Griffin 1T. Spani 2
    BlocksB. Griner 10K. Cain 2


    » Mar 27, 2010 BAY 77, @TENN 62Recap | Box Score