SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Jerkaila Jordan scored 20 and led No. 11 seed Mississippi State to an 81-66 win against No. 6 Creighton in the women’s NCAA Tournament on Friday night.
Jessika Carter, the 6-5 Bulldog center, took advantage of the Bluejays’ undersized front court, with 14 points and 10 rebounds. Anastasia Hayes chipped in 12 points and seven assists. Ahlana Smith and Asianae Johnson each added 10 points.
Lauren Jensen scored 22 points to lead Creighton (22-9), which made a run to the regional final last season. Emma Ronsiek scored 21 points, hitting 3 of 6 shots from beyond the arc.
The Bulldogs picked up their second NCAA Tournament victory in coach Sam Purcell’s inaugural season. Mississippi State defeated Illinois in a First Four matchup on Wednesday.
Mississippi State (23-10) will face No. 3 Notre Dame (26-5) in the second round of the NCAA Tournament on Sunday. The Fighting Irish are hosting first and second-round NCAA games this weekend.
Debreasha Powe hit back-to-back 3-pointers to give Mississippi State a 6-0 lead in the first minute, and the Bulldogs never trailed.
Creighton battled throughout the first half before Mississippi State grabbed a commanding 20-point lead midway through the third quarter. At that point, the game felt out of reach for the Bluejays. BIG PICTURE
Mississippi State: advances with a chance to get to the Sweet 16 for the first time since the Bulldogs were a No. 1 seed in the 2018-19 NCAA Tournament.
Creighton: falls in the first round the year after the team’s incredible run last year.
AP March Madness coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/march-madness and https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-womens-college-basketball-poll and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25
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