Natalie Novosel scored 21 points and Skylar Diggins added 20 to help No. 3 Notre Dame beat fourth-ranked Connecticut in Hartford last night, 72-59, and win the Big East regular season title.
It’s Notre Dame’s first outright conference title. The Fighting Irish shared the regular season championship with UConn in 2001 before going on to win the national title.
The Irish (28-2, 15-1 Big East) had already clinched the top seed in the Big East tournament that begins Friday by virtue of the conference’s tiebreaker. The Huskies fell to third in the conference, losing the tiebreaker to St. John’s, which ended UConn’s 99-game home winning streak on Feb. 18.
Tiffany Hayes scored 22 points and Stefanie Dolson added 18 for UConn (26-4, 13-3), which has now lost consecutive games at home for the first time in 19 years.
The Irish swept the season series from the Huskies and have won three straight overall against UConn, including last season’s victory in the national semifinals. North Carolina was the last team to win three in a row from UConn, doing so from 2004-07.
Baylor 69, Texas A&M 62 - Brittney Griner and Odyssey Sims scored 25 points each and the top-ranked Lady Bears (30-0, 17-0 Big 12) used a late run to hold off the No. 17 Aggies (20-8, 11-6) in College Station, Texas.
Division 3 - Amherst will attempt to win its second consecutive national championship, opening NCAA Tournament play Friday at home against St. Joseph’s College. The Lord Jeffs (27-0) have won 46 consecutive games, and 63 straight at home. Babson meets Bridgewater State in the other Amherst regional game. New England schools also participating are Castleton State, Rhode Island College, Emmanuel, Salve Regina, Elms, Southern Maine, Bowdoin, Tufts, and the University of New England. Rhode Island and Tufts will also host regionals.
Kansas 70, Oklahoma St. 58 - Tyshawn Taylor scored 27 points, Thomas Robinson added 17 points and 11 rebounds, and the No. 3 Jayhawks (25-5, 15-2) claimed the Big 12 title outright by beating the host Cowboys (14-16, 7-10).
Georgetown 59, Notre Dame 41 - Playing at home for the last time, seniors Jason Clark and Henry Sims combined for 25 points, 12 rebounds, and 6 assists, helping the No. 11 Hoyas (22-6, 12-5 Big East) beat the No. 20 Irish (20-10, 12-5).
Baylor 77, Texas Tech 48 - Perry Jones III had 15 points and 10 rebounds, A.J. Walton scored a season-high 13 points, and the No. 9 Bears (25-5, 12-5 Big 12) won their home finale over the Red Raiders.
Division 3 - MIT, ranked No. 3 nationally, opens play in the NCAA Division 3 Tournament on Friday against Skidmore (19-8) in Oneonta, N.Y. The Engineers (25-1) are one of 11 New England schools in the 62-team field; the others are Castleton State, Endicott, Eastern Connecticut, Middlebury, Becker, Amherst, Western Connecticut, Rhode Island College, Salem State, and Albertus Magnus. Middlebury and Amherst are hosting regionals.