TUCSON, ARIZ. Baylor has a simple plan for when things get tight in the NCAA Tournament: Get the ball to Sophia Young.
Young scored 15 of her 21 points in the second half, and the defending NCAA champion Lady Bears beat 11th-seeded New Mexico, 87-67, in the second round of the Albuquerque Regional on Monday night.
Baylor (26-6) advances to play the winner of today's second-round game between second-seeded Maryland and No. 7 seed St. John's in University Park, Pa.
The Lady Bears' eighth straight NCAA Tourney victory was convincing, but it wasn't easy. They had to overcome a seven-point first-half deficit.
Baylor moved on by outrebounding New Mexico 40-29 and by hitting nine of 18 three-pointers after making only eight threes in its previous four games.
Young, the Big 12 Conference Player of the Year, also pulled down a game-high 13 rebounds to lead a well-rounded team effort. Reserve guard Jordan Davis scored 12 points in 13 minutes on 4-of-5 shooting from beyond the arc, and sophomore guard Angela Tisdale had 10 assists.
"They played like they were the defending national champions," New Mexico coach Don Flanagan said. "They are difficult to defend, and they execute extremely well."
Dionne Marsh scored 25 points, and Julie Briody had 19 points in 19 minutes for the Lobos (22-10).
Two days after New Mexico senior center Jana Francis scored a career-high 25 points, the Lady Bears limited her to two points on 1-of-5 shooting in her final career game.
"We're going to guard you," Baylor coach Kim Mulkey-Robertson said.
Not always. Midway through the first half, New Mexico opened a 27-20 lead with a 10-3 run capped by a three-pointer by Marsh, who buried a wide-open shot from the top of the key after Mulkey-Robertson told one of her players to "get off her."
The Bears responded quickly. They reeled off 19 of the next 23 points, including 13 in a row, to take a 39-31 lead with 2:04 to play in the first half.
Baylor opened the second half with a 9-2 run.
Utah 86, Arizona State 65
Tucson, Ariz. - Fifteen-point deficits are nothing to Utah. The fifth-seeded Utes erased another one, this time in the first half, and went on to rout No. 4 seed Arizona State. Kim Smith had 25 points and nine rebounds, and Utah (26-6) won its sixth in a row.