No. 11 seed Creighton upsets No. 6 Iowa
Field Level Media
Jaylyn Agnew had 24 points and Sydney Lamberty added 20 points as the 11th-seeded Creighton Bluejays defeated the sixth-seeded Iowa Hawkeyes 76-70 in the first round of the women's NCAA Tournament Kansas City Region at Pauley Pavilion in Los Angeles.
Megan Gustafson had 29 points and 17 rebounds for the Hawkeyes, who advanced to the tournament for the first time since 2015.
Creighton (19-12) had eight free throws and a layup in the game's final minutes to give itself some distance against a good Iowa team that kept it close. Despite being pounded on the boards, the Bluejays had some clutch rebounds in the final minute to preserve the lead.
After neither team gained a foothold in the first quarter, trading leads and going into the second quarter tied at 19, the Bluejays gradually began building some cushion. Creighton went up three heading to halftime on a Lamberty layup with one second left to make the score 34-31, then increased its lead to 56-50 going into the fourth quarter. The Bluejays led by as much as nine in the fourth before Iowa cut the lead to four with 6:39 left.
Behind Gustafson's impressive performance in the paint, Iowa (24-8) dominated the rebounding battle, 39-28. But the Hawkeyes had double the turnovers as Creighton (14-7) and shot 25 percent from 3-point range.
Audrey Faber added 12 points for Creighton, which shot 43 percent from the field and 68 percent from the free-throw line yet came away with the win.
Kathleen Doyle had 11 points and eight assists for Iowa. Hannah Stewart added 10 points off the bench for the Hawkeyes, who lost for just the second time in 10 games. Iowa was seeking what would have been its second Sweet 16 in four seasons.
With the win, Creighton advances to play No. 3 seed UCLA on its home floor -- Pauley Pavilion -- on Monday in a Kansas City Region second-round matchup. The Bluejays, who advanced to their second straight NCAA Tournament for the first time, have a chance at their first Sweet 16 berth in program history.