Stanford Cardinal women advance to the Elite 8 the opponent to be determined on Tue Mar 31, 2021 (@StanfordWBB image)
By Barbara Mason
Sunday afternoon the NCAA Women’s Sweet Sixteen saw the top-ranked overall Stanford Cardinal (28-2) take on the No. 5 Missouri St. Lady Bears (23-3). Both teams were looking to punch their ticket to the Elite Eight. The Lady Bears had a huge task trying to contain the offense of the Cardinal. It wasn’t even close as the Cardinal won it by 27 points 89-62 to advance to the next round on Tuesday.
The Stanford offense, an ever evolving team thanks to the legendary Tara VanDerveer, presented the biggest problem for Missouri St. VenDerveer never settles, and continues to become better and better striving for excellence year after year.
The Stanford offense took an eight point lead after the first quarter 23-16. The Lady Bears fought hard trying contain the lethal offense of the Cardinal but they would be overwhelmed in the first half. Stanford’s offense and defense was up for the task managing the game beautifully.
The second quarter saw the Cardinal amp it up yet another level in complete control of this game. As the clock ran down on the quarter the Cardinal were firing on all cylinders knocking down three’s left and right. Stanford led 49-26 at the half. We have seen Missouri fall behind in past games only to come back and win but the stellar offensive and defensive execution of the Cardinal would challenge the Lady Bears in the second half.
Both Kiana Williams and Anna Wilson, little sis of quarterback Russell Wilson, scored ten points in the first half. Haley Jones had eight points and Lacie Hull with nine points. It was a great offensive effort for Stanford in both quarters.
Stanford was a runaway freight train in the third quarter pushing their lead to 71-37 denying Missouri at every turn. The Lady Bears had only allowed 45 points in their previous game but they were facing the best of the best, something they had not faced all tournament. This was total domination by the Cardinal.
A game is not typically called to start a fourth quarter but the writing was indelibly carved on the wall in this one. The final score was 89-62. To their credit, the Lady Bears continued to fight in this game and actually outscored Stanford in the fourth quarter 25-18.
Stanford’s Hannah Jump had an amazing 17 points off the bench with Williams finishing with 16, Wilson with 13 and Jones with 11.
Stanford now moves into the Elite Eight Tuesday, March 30, their opponent TBD.