The Big East women’s basketball tournament heats up on Sunday with a pair of semifinal matchups beginning at 3 p.m. ET at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut on FS1.
To start the day, No. 9 UConn (28-5, 18-2 Big East) defeated Marquette (21-10, 13-7 Big East) 81-52 to head to its third straight Big East title game.
Then, No. 11 Villanova (28-5, 17-3 Big East) survived a first-half deficit and some late-game dramatics to defeat Creighton (22-8, 15-5 Big East) 63-61. Maddy Siegrist made a pair of free throws with 26 seconds remaining to put Villanova up 63-59. However, the Wildcats committed an intentional foul with 11 seconds left, giving the Blue Jays two free throws and continued possession.
After making a pair of free throws, Lauren Jensen missed a shot for the tie with four seconds left, ensuring the win for Villanova.
Sunday’s games set up for an exciting UConn-Villanova matchup for the Big East title on Monday at 7 p.m. ET on FS1.
You can catch up on all the action from Sunday’s semifinals right here!
No. 11 Villanova 63, Creighton 61
Beating the buzzer to open things up
Molly Mogensen drained a 3-pointer from the top of the perimeter right before the shot clock expired to get the scoring started for Creighton.
Mogensen got the shooter’s bounce on her jumper to give her eight points in the game’s first four minutes.
Maddy making the tough shot
Villanova star Maddy Siegrist got the tough jumper to fall as she was getting fouled for the 3-point play early in the second quarter.
Emma finds her spot
Emma Ronsiek got an open spot off the dribble that helped her sink the 3-pointer to expand Creighton’s lead to 30-24 in the middle of the second quarter.
Mullin moves open
Brooke Mullin found an open spot at top of the perimeter, draining the open 3-pointer right before halftime to help Villanova cut into Creighton’s lead, 34-32.
Just enough space to get the shot off
Creighton’s Lauren Jensen opened up the half by draining a 3-pointer despite the tough defense from Villanova.
Maddy on the move
Siegrist took the defensive rebound and pushed the ball up the court. She got into the post and decided to take a turnaround jumper that went in to give Villanova a 40-39 lead in the middle of the third quarter.
Hitting the tough shot
Jensen made the runner as she was falling down to help Creighton keep it close, making it a 51-47 game with 7:22 remaining.
Lucy Olsen found Kaitlyn Orihel open in the corner and made the cross-court pass. Oriehl made the shot off the catch to give Villanova a 54-47 lead with seven minutes left.
Siegrist shook off her defender to get into the paint and make the jumper to give her 30 in the game and put Villanova up 56-51 with just over five minutes left.
Creighton keeping it close
Jensen made the 3-pointer with 1:30 remaining to make it a 61-59 game in favor of Villanova.
After getting the stop with four seconds left, Villanova was able to inbound the ball a couple of times to run the clock out and return to the Big East title game for the second straight season.
Final: No. 9 UConn 81 Marquette, 52
Lou opens the game with a bucket
Lou Lopez Senechal drained a mid-range jumper to get the Huskies up 2-0 early.
Liza Karlen got open down low to get an easy layup to match UConn’s opening bucket.
Pouring it on early
Aaliyah Edwards drained the tough jumper with ease to put UConn up 9-2 early and force Marquette to call a timeout.
Rose Nkumu drained the 3-pointer for Marquette to cut into UConn’s lead, making it 11-7 with 4:13 left in the first quarter.
Dorka on the dot
Dorka Juhász got open at the top of the perimeter, allowing her to make the 3-pointer with ease to give UConn a 20-12 lead at the end of the first.
Edwards hit Marquette with a spin move down low to help put UConn up 22-12 early in the second quarter.
Lopez Senechal slipped open and drained a 3-pointer to help UConn take a 25-12 lead.
Back-to-back 3s for the Golden Eagles
Marquette was able to cut into UConn’s lead a bit in the middle of the second quarter as Jordan Hare and Mackenzie Hare both hit 3-pointers to make it 25-18 during a scoring drought for the Huskies.
Griffin getting tough
Aubrey Griffin fought for the offensive rebound with multiple Marquette defenders around her, getting fouled while making the putback.
Griffin didn’t convert the free throw, keeping UConn’s lead at 37-22 going into halftime.
Silky smooth catch-and-shoot
Lopez Senechal made the jumper look easy, draining the shot off the inbounds pass to open up the scoring for UConn in the second half.
Not on Nika’s watch
Nika Muhl picked Nkumu’s pocket, getting the steal to put UConn up 43-24 early in the second half.
Tough to score on UConn
Edwards blocked King’s layup in the closing moments of the third quarter as Marquette’s struggled to get a run going. UConn held a 61-36 lead going into the fourth quarter.
Azzi gets in on the action
Azzi Fudd, who is UConn’s leading scorer this season, hit a jumper late to help add to the Huskies’ lead in her second game back from a knee injury. She finished Sunday’s game with four points, shooting 2-for-7 off the bench.
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