Moore scored 16 of her 25 points in the opening 9 minutes and seemingly invincible UConn took it from there to roll over Iowa State 74-36 in a regional semifinal Sunday.
“Connecticut is certainly as good as advertised,” Iowa State coach Bill Fennelly said. “I don’t think I’ve had a whipping like that since I was a little kid and I broke something of my mom’s.”
Kelly Faris came off the bench for 16 points and Tina Charles also had 16 for the Huskies (36-0), who extended their unprecedented winning streak to 75 in a row.
The Huskies have won their first three games in the tournament by a combined 148 points—the most ever. UConn easily surpassed the previous mark of 131 it set in 2000 and 2001.
The Cyclones, one the nation’s top three-point-shooting teams, were rattled into going just 6 of 25 behind the arc.
“I know it sounds like a broken record from me, but going into today’s game I wasn’t really sure how we were going to keep them from making a bunch of threes,” UConn coach Geno Auriemma said. “I can’t tell you how well this group played defensively, how they locked into the scouting report and how well they prepared. They just played exceptionally well defensively.”
Anna Prins scored 10 points for Iowa State (25-8), which fell far short of duplicating the biggest win in program history. The Cyclones had stunned top-seeded Uconn, 64-58, in the regional semis in 1999.
Not this time. The outcome was never in doubt after Moore hit her first four three-pointers.
Connecticut advances to its fifth straight regional championship game and 10th in 11 years. The Huskies will meet third-seeded Florida State in Tuesday’s regional final. The Seminoles beat seventh-seeded Mississippi State, 74-71, on Sunday.
Now 74-15 in NCAA play, the Huskies have won their last nine NCAA tournament games and 13 of 14. The only loss was an 82-73 setback to Stanford in the national semifinals in 2008.
-- (3) Florida State 74, (7) Mississippi State 71—Courtney Ward scored Florida State’s last six points in the final 38 seconds, leading the way to a victory over Mississippi State at Dayton, Ohio.
The Seminoles (29-5) advance to meet No. 1-seeded Connecticut (36-0).
Alysha Harvin had 21 points and Ward 14 for the Seminoles.
Chanel Mokango scored 20 points to lead the Lady Bulldogs (21-13).
Kansas City Regional
-- (3) Oklahoma 77, (2) Notre Dame 72 (OT)—Nyeshia Stevenson made a three-pointer with 4.4 seconds left in overtime and Oklahoma knocked off Notre Dame to reach the regional finals for the second year in a row.
Stevenson had 21 points and Abi Olajuwon added 20 points and 14 rebounds for the Sooners (26-10).
Melissa Lechlitner had 22 points for Notre Dame (29-6).
-- (4) Kentucky 76, (1) Nebraska 67—At Kansas City, Mo., A’dia Mathies scored 21 points and as the quicker, more athletic Wildcats roared past the top-seeded Cornhuskers and into the finals of the Kansas City Regional.
The Wildcats (28-7), extending their school-record win total, opened the second half on an 11-1 run and led by as many as 19 points over the Big 12 champion Huskers.
Several thousand red-clad Nebraska fans tried to help fuel a late rally by the Huskers (32-2) when Lindsey Moore’s thre-pointer cut the lead to 68-56 with 3:52 to go. But the Wildcats held on to make their first regional final, where they’ll meet Oklahoma.
Dominique Kelley had 22 points for Nebraska and Kelsey Griffin added 15 points and 12 rebounds.