For about a week, Florida guard Jordan Jones listened to the chatter about how Ohio State felt insulted by the selection committee.
It was as if the Gators - who were playing the Buckeyes in the first round - were an afterthought.
“All week long we heard Ohio State this, Ohio State that, their guards average this, their post players do that,’’ Jones said. “I know Ohio State talked a lot about being disrespected, but we felt disrespected, too. I don’t think anyone knew how good our defense was.’’
Quick on the perimeter and relentless on the boards, the ninth-seeded Gators were a step ahead of Ohio State from the very start Sunday, beating the eighth-seeded Buckeyes, 70-65, in Bowling Green, Ohio, in the Des Moines Regional. Florida scored the game’s first 9 points and led the entire way.
Jennifer George had 16 points and six rebounds and Lanita Bartley added 15 points to lead Florida to a win in front of a crowd packed with fans of the in-state Buckeyes.
Tayler Hill scored 23 points for Ohio State, including two late baskets to pull the Buckeyes (25-7) within 2. Florida (20-12) patiently worked the ball inside to George, who went up strong to her left and scored with 45 seconds to play. Emilee Harmon missed at the other end for the Buckeyes.
Ohio State star Samantha Prahalis went scoreless in the second half and finished with 9 points.
Florida forced turnovers early and finished with 20 offensive rebounds, winning despite shooting only 35 percent from the field. The Gators will face top-seeded Baylor Tuesday night.
Des Moines Regional
Baylor 81, UC Santa Barbara 40 - Brittney Griner scored 14 points in only 22 minutes, and the No. 1-ranked Lady Bears (35-0) rolled over the the Gauchos (17-16) in Bowling Green.
Brooklyn Pope scored 13 points for the Lady Bears and Destiny Williams added 12. Odyssey Sims contributed 10.
Baylor has not lost since falling in the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament last year.
Georgetown 61, Fresno State 56 - Tia Magee scored 17 points as the Hoyas (23-8) blew most of a 17-point lead and made just four field goals during the final 15 1/2 minutes but held on to beat the Bulldogs (28-6) at Chapel Hill, N.C.
Ki-Ki Moore scored 22 points and Rosie Moult added 12 for the 12th-seeded Bulldogs, who remained winless in six tournament appearances.
Georgia Tech 76, Sacred Heart 50 - Freshman Sydney Wallace scored a season-high 28 points and the fourth-seeded Yellow Jackets (25-8) made everything look easy against the outmanned Pioneers (27-6) at Chapel Hill.
Gabrielle Washington had 13 points and Callan Taylor added 10 for Sacred Heart. The Pioneers made their third appearance in the tournament since 2006 but remained winless.
Delaware 73, UALR 42 - Elena Delle Donne had 39 points and 11 rebounds to help the third-seeded Blue Hens (31-1) beat the Trojans (20-13) at Little Rock, Ark. Delaware earned its first victory in three NCAA Tournament games and ran its winning streak to 21.
Delle Donne, the nation’s leading scorer at 27.5 points per game, was making her first NCAA appearance.
Kansas 57, Nebraska 49 - Angel Goodrich scored 20 points and the Jayhawks (20-12) led by as many as 10 in the first half and held on in the second for their first tournament win since 1999, beating the Cornhuskers in Little Rock.
The appearance was the school’s first since 2000 and the first in eight seasons under coach Bonnie Henrickson.
Penn State 85, UTEP 77 - Maggie Lucas scored 23 points, Alex Bentley added 21, and the fourth-seeded Lady Lions (25-6), who trailed for much of the first half, rallied to beat the Miners (29-3) in Baton Rouge, La.
Gloria Brown had 18 points and 10 rebounds for UTEP, which had not lost by more than 3 points all season.
LSU 64, San Diego State 56 - LaSondra Barrett had 17 points and 10 rebounds in her comeback from a concussion, and the fifth-seeded Tigers (23-10), who trailed by 6 midway through the second half, rallied to beat the Aztecs (25-7) at Baton Rouge.
Courtney Jones added 13 points and Jeanne Kenney 10 for LSU, which used a 12-0 run that lasted nearly seven minutes to take control late in the game.
St. John’s 69, Creighton 67 - Nadirah McKenith scored on a coast-to-coast layup with 0.1 seconds left to help the third-seeded Red Storm (23-9) avoid an upset to the Bluejays (20-13) in Norman, Okla.
After Carli Tritz hit two free throws to tie it with 5.4 seconds left, McKenith took an inbounds pass and zoomed up the left sideline and into the lane before lofting a high-arcing shot that splashed in for the winner.
McKenith finished with 21 points and Da’Shena Stevens scored 12 for the Red Storm, who narrowly avoided becoming the first No. 3 seed ever to lose in the tournament’s opening round.
Vanderbilt 60, Middle Tennessee 46 - Jasmine Lister scored 19 points and the seventh-seeded Commodores (23-9) used a 20-5 run in the second half to pull away from Blue Raiders (26-7) in Nashville.
Kortni Jones led Middle Tennessee with 12 points and Ebony Rowe had 10 with 16 rebounds as the Blue Raiders lost their third straight opening NCAA game to a Southeastern Conference team.
Duke 82, Samford 47 - Tricia Liston scored 22 points and freshman Elizabeth Williams, the ACC defensive player of the year, had 11 points and three rebounds despite playing with a stress fracture in her lower right leg to lift the second-seeded Blue Devils (25-5) past the overmatched Bulldogs (20-13) in Nashville.
Oklahoma 88, Michigan 67 - Aaryn Ellenberg scored 21 of her 28 points in the second half, Whitney Hand added 12 points and 10 rebounds, and the host Sooners (21-12) pounded the Wolverines (20-12), who were making their first tournament appearance in 11 years.
Marist 76, Georgia 70 - Corielle Yarde scored 21 points, Brandy Gang had 18, and the 13th-seeded Red Foxes (26-7) upset the Bulldogs (22-9) at Tallahassee.
Marist shot 52.5 percent and made 21 of 25 free throws for its 11th straight win. Georgia was 6 of 8 at the line.
St. Bonaventure 72, Florida Gulf Coast 65 - At Tallahassee, Megan Van Tatenhove scored 18 points, Armelia Horton added 17, and the fifth-seeded Bonnies (30-3) pulled out the victory, snapping a 21-game winning streak by the Eagles (29-3).
Doris Ortega and Chelsea Bowker added 10 points each for the Bonnies, who overcame a 53-42 deficit in the final 6 1/2 minutes.
Notre Dame 74, Liberty 43 - Kayla McBride had 15 points and the top-seeded Irish (31-3) ran out to an 11-0 lead less than two minutes into the game and overpowered the Flames (24-9) at South Bend, Ind.
The Irish will face California Tuesday at the Purcell Pavilion, where Notre Dame is 16-1 this season.
California 84, Iowa 74 - Layshia Clarendon scored 16 points and hit a pair of free throws with 41 seconds left as the eighth-seeded Golden Bears (25-9) hit the boards hard and came up with 13 steals in beating the Hawkeyes (19-12) at South Bend.
Brittany Boyd added 15 points, 8 assists, and 6 steals for Cal, which had a 41-29 rebounding edge, including 19-7 on the offensive boards.