March 28, 2007

Dallas: Awards and Wrap-Up from Dallas

Four teams came to Reunion Arena with the dream of reaching the Final Four. Tonight, we know the one team that lived the dream, and it's North Carolina, who advances to play Tennessee in the Final Four at Cleveland's Quicken Loans Arena. We've had a good time in Dallas, and it's time to hand out some awards and call it a regional.

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Dallas: The Thrill of Victory

The North Carolina Tar Heels are back in the Final Four, and the team managed to savor the win, while also looking forward to their next destination: Cleveland, and a showdown with Tennessee.

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Dallas: The Agony of Defeat

It was a tough night for #2 Purdue, but for Coach Sharon Versyp, and seniors Erin Lawless and Katie Gearlds, life will go on....tomorrow.

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March 27, 2007

Dallas: All-Regional Team Announced

As we wait for the post-game press conferences, here's the 2007 Dallas Regional All-Tournament Team.

Katie Gearlds, Purdue
Lindsay Wisdom-Hylton, Purdue
Ivory Latta, North Carolina
LaToya Pringle, North Carolina

And the 2007 Dallas Regional Most Outstanding Player....

Erlana Larkins, North Carolina

Dallas: Cleveland Rocks for Carolina...Tar Heels Win Dallas Regional

The smile on Ivory Latta's face as the final seconds ran out said it all.

Last year, UNC ended Purdue's run with a 70-68 win in the Sweet 16. This year, it went to the Elite Eight, but Carolina again proved to be Purdue's demise, beating the Boilermakers 84-72 to advance to Cleveland and the Final Four.

Carolina's alma mater is being played right now....funny how it sounds EXACTLY like the Kansas alma mater, while the Tar Heels are celebrating at center court. What a huge victory for the Heels, and what a letdown for the Boilers.

More to come from Dallas, including post-game, awards, and a wrap-up. Once again, North Carolina has won the Dallas Regional, beating Purdue 84-72 here at Reunion Arena.

Dallas: Fans Starting to File Out

Purdue's fans are on their feet, singing their fight song one last time, as Carolina begins to celebrate in the stands. Looks like the ACC will save face by getting one team in Cleveland, as the Tar Heels will have a rematch against Pat Summitt and the Lady Vols of Tennessee.

Another standing ovation from the Boilers as Erin Lawless has played her last minute as a Boiler, fouling out of the game with 32.1 seconds left. Larkins is shooting free throws...makes the first...misses the second, and it's 80-70 Carolina with 25.7 seconds to go.

Dallas: Carolina Sensing Regional Title

As the Purdue band chants the theme song to Inspector Gadget, Ivory Latta calmly sinks her free throws, and UNC has a comfortable 76-66 lead with 2:16 to go.

Purdue, time to start throwing some 3-pointers up. Otherwise, we're going to have a border war up in Cleveland, as Carolina would face Tennessee in the national semifinals.

Dallas: And the Tar Heels Answer

It's the name of the game: Anything Purdue does, Carolina does better.

The Tar Heels answer with a 5-0 spurt of their own, and Purdue finds themselves in another hole, down 69-60 with 5:04 to go. It's the speed of the Tar Heels, combined with Purdue's lack of ball handling tonight, that has doomed the Boilers for 35 minutes of this game.

Purdue is starting to need a miracle, as North Carolina smells blood in the water.

Dallas: Heeeeere Come the Boilers

Just as I finish typing the last post, the Boilers answer with an 8-0 run to get back in this game. Katie Gearlds hits two straight trifectas, and then makes a beautiful pass inside to Jodi Howell for a layup, cutting the UNC lead to 64-60 with 6:40 to go.

Can Purdue finish the run is the question now on everyone's mind, as the crowd is buzzing a lot more with the Boiler rally. It's become a shootout here in Dallas!

Dallas: Purdue Mini-Run Squashed

For awhile, it seemed as if Purdue was going to come back, cutting the lead to 56-52 with 9:32 to go. However, North Carolina answered back, as Camille Little and Ivory Latta threw a quick 6-0 spurt together for the Heels, and they now have a 52-42 lead on the Boilers with just 8:21 to go.

The spurt really hurt Purdue, as their fans were on their feet, sensing that it could've been the start of a much needed run to get in the game and perhaps reclaim the lead. However, Carolina's been able to answer Purdue every time, and the Boilers are running out of chances here in Dallas.

Can Purdue make that one last comeback? We'll find out, as the Boilers have the ball, moving upcourt.

Dallas: Momentum Shift: Carolina Pushes Lead

Sylvia Hatchell lit a fire under her Tar Heels, and they've responded in kind, pushing the lead to 54-45 with 11:27 to go in the game. Purdue continues to struggle with turnovers, while Carolina has been drawing fouls inside and going to the free throw line more frequently.

Gotta laugh at the Purdue band though, who has sung every theme song from Meow Mix to Oscar Meyer to try and stop Carolina from making shots at the charity stripe. So far, not much success, as Carolina's hit all but one in the second half.

UNC has the ball, up by nine, and Purdue's running out of time.

Dallas: Carolina Up, but Boilers have the Mo

We've got just 15:34 to go, and though Carolina's up 45-40, it's Purdue that definitely has the momentm right now. They're playing tougher inside, shooting much better, and finding ways to get the ball in the hands of Katie Gearlds, who now has 13 points in the game for Purdue. The only problem now is stopping Eriana Larkins, who has 16 points, almost all of them garbage buckets, for the Tar Heels. Larkins is quickly making a case for Regional MVP Honors should Carolina hold on.

However, don't be surprised if Purdue makes a charge back into this one. Their team has come out with a lot more fire this half than North Carolina has.

Purdue's got the ball as we resume play.

Dallas: Halftime Stats

Here's some halftime stats of note, with Carolina leading Purdue 35-28.

Points in the Paint:
N. Carolina: 24
Purdue: 14

Big difference = lead for UNC

Second Chance Points
N. Carolina: 9
Purdue: 3

Purdue's got to be tougher on the boards.

3-point shooting
N. Carolina: 2-7
Purdue: 3-9

Boilers need to shoot better to get back in this one.

Turnovers:
N. Carolina: 14
Purdue: 14

Yikes! And I said Purdue was in trouble if they had 12 turnovers for the GAME.

Carolina's out on the floor...we're waiting on the Boilers. And by the way, Purdue Pete's sledge hammer is no prop...that's a real sledge he's got. I wouldn't mess with him right now

We're 20 minutes away from finding out who's getting a ticket to the Final Four here in Dallas.

Dallas: UNC Carries Lead to the Half

It was all Tar Heels late in the first half, and that's been the difference in the game. Led by 10 points from Ivory Latta, Carolina ended the half on a 18-8 run, and they're up 35-28 at the half.

Purdue's Katie Gearlds has been held to just eight points so far, and Wisdom-Hylton only has six right now, with four of those coming late. Both of these girls MUST step up big for Purdue for the Boilers to come back.

Meanwhile, Carolina's plan of attack is working perfectly, as they're getting the better shooting from Latta, while dominating the inside with McCants and Larkins. Both girls have eight points for the Heels in the first half, as they've pushed the smaller Boilers around.

I'd like to see more from Purdue's Erin Lawless as well. She was a non-factor against Georgia, thanks to foul troubles, and she scored four quick ones to start the game today, but since has been quiet. Lawless has been one of Purdue's most reliable leaders all season, and now's the time to step it up.

More to come as we're at the half here at Reunion Arena here in Dallas.

Dallas: UNC Carries Lead to the Half

It was all Tar Heels late in the first half, and that's been the difference in the game. Led by 10 points from Ivory Latta, Carolina ended the half on a 18-8 run, and they're up 35-28 at the half.

Purdue's Katie Gearlds has been held to just eight points so far, and Wisdom-Hylton only has six right now, with four of those coming late. Both of these girls MUST step up big for Purdue for the Boilers to come back.

Meanwhile, Carolina's plan of attack is working perfectly, as they're getting the better shooting from Latta, while dominating the inside with McCants and Larkins. Both girls have eight points for the Heels in the first half, as they've pushed the smaller Boilers around.

I'd like to see more from Purdue's Erin Lawless as well. She was a non-factor against Georgia, thanks to foul troubles, and she scored four quick ones to start the game today, but since has been quiet. Lawless has been one of Purdue's most reliable leaders all season, and now's the time to step it up.

More to come as we're at the half here at Reunion Arena here in Dallas.

Dallas: Carolina Charges Ahead

This one has the makings of a back-and-forth game to the very end, unlike the blowout in Dayton, which drew a big OOOOOOH from the crowd when the final was announced. For now though, Carolina's making a huge push.

Purdue was able to stop Carolina inside for a bit, but they're struggling all over again. Eriana Larkins and Rashanda McCants have scored half of the Tar Heel points, and the Purdue turnovers are catching up on them, as UNC's turning them into transition points.

Purdue needs a serious recharge...as it's now 31-24 Carolina with 2:13 to go.

Dallas: Stuck In Tar? UNC Slumping, Purdue Takes Lead

UNC has been stuck on 17 points for quite sometime now, as the Boilers have finally found some of their offense. Jodi Howell came off the bench to hit a huge 3-pointer, and finally Lindsay Wisdom-Hylton scored inside, giving Purdue a 20-17 lead with 7:54 to go.

As Purdue's band sang their fight song, we have four avid Purdue fans behind us trying to sing along. For the most part, they knew the words, but they lacked the tempo. As Simon Cowell would put it, it was an utter mess.

So is UNC right now. It's the Boilers by three.

Dallas: Purdue Turnovers Costing Them Dearly

UNC isn't making their shots, so it'd be a perfect time for Purdue to make a run in this game. However, the Boilers are turning the ball over like it's a hot potato. Six straight possessions have resulted in six turnovers for Purdue. This team needs to settle down and get some serious ball control.

Meanwhile, Carolina's not taking advantage of Purdue turnovers, as they're missing almost all their shots. Part of this is just cold shooting, and part of it is the aggressive Boiler defense.

Needless to say, it's 17-15 Carolina with 8:50 to go.

Dallas: Close Game Continues

Nothing's changed much in this game so far. Carolina pushed their lead up to four at two different times in the game, but FahKara Malone's 3-pointer has cut the Tar Heel lead to 15-14 with 11:17 to go in the game.

UNC is having a lot tougher time inside, as Sharon Versyp is getting her Boilers to fight tough in the paint and make Carolina try jump shots instead of working inside. As for the Boilers, Malone's five points have been huge, as it's taking the pressure off of Katie Gearlds. It's also making up for the quiet start of Purdue forward Lindsay Wisdom-Hylton, who's been shut down by Eriana Larkins so far this game.

Carolina has the ball as we resume play, with a raucous Purdue band behind them.

Dallas: Fast Start to Regional Final

It's been a fast-moving, back-and-forth game for the first four minutes, with North Carolina holding the early 9-7 lead on the Boilers.

Some quick notes on the keys to the game... North Carolina has 6 points in the paint, Purdue has 2... The Boilers are 1-1 from 3-point range (Gearlds), while UNC is 1-2 from behind the arc, with Ivory Latta hitting a long-distance trifecta.

Purdue's band right now is a lot more vocal than Carolina's. The Tar Heel band sits politely in the stands, while the Purdue band chants, claps, and even taunts the opposing Tar Heels.

We've got 15:30 to go in the first half, and Carolina has the ball and a two point lead.

Dallas: And We're Set To Go

The teams have taken their benches, the traditional "Rock And Roll: Part 2" is being played (aka the "Hey!" song), and we're set to go here in Dallas.

One good note...the Carolina fans have brought a LOT more energy tonight. Blue pom pons are filling the seats, and the fans are on their feet a lot more tonight than yesterday. Very good sign to see....it's sad when you come all this way and can't cheer.

As the lower seed, Purdue is in all black tonight, while the Tar Heels are in white with the famous Carolina blue trim.

The lineups have been announced, the fans are on their feet....let's get this party started!!!!

Dallas: 10 Minutes to Tip-Off

We're inside Reunion Arena, as a sparse crowd of Old Gold and Carolina Blue await tip-off of the shootout in Dallas between the top-ranked North Carolina Tar Heels and the second-seeded Purdue Boilermakers. The teams are on the floor as we speak, and the bands have taken a breather before the real pre-game show begins.

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Dallas: The GW Flag

You've seen the GW mascot, and you've heard the rave reviews of the energetic spirit squad and band. Thanks to GW band member Robert Lintott, we've got one more thing to show: GWU's Old Glory...the women's basketball flag

gwuflag.jpg

The flag resides with Lintott, and carries signatures of years of Colonial women's basketball, including GW Coach McKeowan, and each year, the freshman are given the flag to sign. It follows the band everywhere the ladies go.

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Dallas: Pre-Game Thoughts

We are hours away from what should be a classic matchup in Big D. There might have been upsets across the country, but not in this regional, as it's #1 North Carolina and #2 Purdue facing off for a ticket to Cleveland and the 2007 NCAA Women's Final Four.

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March 26, 2007

Dallas: Semifinal Wrap-Up

Four teams fought their way to get to Reunion Arena and play tonight. Now, we're down to just two, as North Carolina and Purdue will face off for a ticket to the Final Four, and Georgia and George Washington head home, with their seasons officially finished.

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Dallas: Wrapping Up UNC-GW

It was a total Carolina win tonight, and here's some final stats of note, as well as dishing out our awards for the game.

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Dallas: Latta's Stats Say Bad, but Hatchell Says Good

Read the final stat line on UNC's Ivory Latta, and you'd think she had one of her worst games ever.

2-12 shooting
1-9 3-pt. shooting
4-4 free throws
9 points
4 rebounds
3 assists
4 turnovers
1 steal

To most, it doesn't look too impressive (especially with the shooting and assist/turnover ratio). But for UNC Coach Sylvia Hatchell, it was just right.

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March 25, 2007

Dallas: It's Official: #1 Carolina vs. #2 Purdue

We've had upsets in Dayton and in Greensboro, but in Dallas, we're getting what the NCAA Selection Committee expected: a showdown of #1 vs. #2.

#2 Purdue did their part earlier tonight, and #1 North Carolina took off from a 10-10 tie and never looked back, rolling their way to a convincing 70-56 win over the George Washington Colonials, who played with a lot of heart, but was simply overwhelmed by the size, speed and talent of the Tar Heels.

There's more to come, including post-game, our nightly awards, and our wrap-up from tonight in Dallas. But for now, we know it's North Carolina and Purdue that will fight on Tuesday for a spot in the Final Four.

Dallas: Getting Quiet In Dallas

UNC is in control, leading the Colonials of George Washington 67-48 with 3:53 to go in the game.

As the Tar Heel band plays the fight song, there's a number of North Carolina fans that aren't even clapping to the fight song. I'm going to give them the benefit of the doubt and say they're sleep deprived. Otherwise, not cheering or clapping during your school's fight song?? Even in a blowout, that's a serious no-no in the college athletic world.

One thing's for sure....they'll have to be on their feet a lot more for their game against Purdue on Tuesday.

Dallas: Contrasting Characters

North Carolina's up 61-39 with 7:50 to go, so it's still a rout here in Dallas.

However, it's funny to note the differences between fans. While we've mentioned at length the energy and enthusiasm of George Washington, North Carolina's fans seem bored...and very quiet. Baskets lead to polite applause instead of roars from the Carolina blue sections, and their band and pep squads are very quiet, not even chanting for the Colonials to miss a free thow.

Some might call that classy. Others could call it a sign of really spoiled fans. What do you think?

Dallas: Fans Filing Out as Tar Hells Roll On

The Carolina and GW fans are the only ones left in the house, as the Purdue fans have headed back to their hotels; knowing who's next for their Boilers on Tuesday night. It's 52-33 Heels with 11:53 to go, as the Colonials have no answer inside for Carolina.

This will make for an interesting matchup on Tuesday...the Carolina and Purdue war of the paint.

Meanwhile, I can't get over how George Washington continues to enjoy the moment. Their band is mocking Carolina's at the moment, while their bench is smiling and their cheerleaders continue to smile as well. How can you not love this program?

Dallas: Latta Quiet, but Tar Heels Cruising

When most people think of the UNC Lady Tar Heels, the focus shifts to senior superstar Ivory Latta. Tonight, George Washington has held North Carolina's sensational guard to just three points so far, but her offense hasn't been needed, as the Tar Heels are spreading the ball around and letting everyone score in what's been a fairly easy game so far for the top seed.

It's 46-29 North Carolina with 15:53 to go in the game, as George Washington's fans continue to cheer and yell, hoping for a late miracle here at Reunion Arena.

Dallas: Tar Heels Up, GW Still Fighting

There's no doubt that North Carolina has more talent, but George Washington keeps on fighting, scoring the last five points of the half to cut the Tar Heel lead to 38-24 at intermission.

Carolina has dominated the inside, cleaned up on the boards, and have totally had their way in the first half against an overmatched Colonial squad. However, you've got to love the heart of George Washington. Their team, fans...everyone associated with George Washington is giving their all in trying to make a comeback against the Tar Heels.

GW's pom squad is going to perform at halftime...wow...finally someone's going to. Good for them...they're getting Squad of the Night honors for sure...and are good candidates for Squad of the Region. I've never seen a spirit squad that doesn't stop smiling, even when their team is way down.

We've got 20 minutes of basketball left, and right now Carolina looks to be headed for a showdown with Purdue.

Dallas: REJECTED!

Oh man, what a block we just saw here in Dallas.

UNC's Camille Little stole the ball and was racing upcourt for what seemed to be an uncontested layup. However, GW's Kimberly Beck had other ideas. Streaking down the court after Little, Beck managed to reach up and put both hands on the ball for a SERIOUS REJECTION on Little, bringing the Colonial crowd to its feet for the loudest roar of the half.

It's still all Carolina, as they're up 31-15 with 5:00 to go, but we had to report on one bright moment for George Washington.

Dallas: GW in Drought, Carolina In Control

It's hard to win a game when you're turning the ball over more than you're shooting, and it's even worse when you're not getting the defensive rebound. GW is facing both these dilemmas, as Carolina has raced out to a 23-12 lead with 7:14 to go.

G-Dub has been stuck in a rut for awhile, as they're unable to work the ball inside, and Carolina is flying all over the court, intercepting passes at will and driving down the court. The Tar Heels aren't playing their best right now; if they were it'd be about 35-12 right now. However, their defense has proven to be a problem that, for now, the Colonials haven't been able to solve.

Amazingly though, the Colonial bench is smiling. Their band and cheerleaders haven't stopped cheering or smiling as well. They've proven to be yet another reason as to why March Madness is such a great time of the year.

Dallas: Latta Sparks First Heel Run

The Tar Heels have made the first run of the game, scoring seven unanswered, and it's been thanks mostly to the play of Ivory Latta. Latta drove inside to create two assists, and then launched a long 3-pointer to send the Carolina fans into a frenzy, as North Carolina is starting to pick up confidence with every possession.

The Colonials need a spark...something to get them back into this game. However, Whitney Allen's not going to be able to provide it, as she picked up her third foul with 12:57 to go in the first half. Kimberly Beck's been their best shooter so far, so maybe it'll be #5 that leads the Colonials back.

We've got 10:54 to go in the first half though, and North Carolina will have the ball, leading 17-10.

Dallas: G-Dub Hanging Tough with Heels

N. Carolina scored the first six right away, but the Colonials have answered, as Carolina now leads 6-4 at the first media timeout.

Sylvia Hatchell's plan is simple for Carolina: pound it inside and let Rashanda McCants take control of the game. Ivory Latta's staying around the perimeter, and has yet to take a shot. She's passing it inside, but G-Dub has drawn two charges, aware of UNC's early plans.

Meanwhile, GW knows that UNC is bigger inside, so their plan is to keep passing around the perimeter and find an open shot when they can against the bigger, faster Tar Heels. So far though, the Colonials have done well against the NC attack.

Seriously, the Colonials have brought cheering to a whole new level here. Their band has a huge flag, face paint, and are chanting any and everything they can think of at the moment, while their fans laugh and cheer along. What a spirited group from our nation's capital!

Dallas: All Set for GW-UNC

Most of the fans (save the UGA ones) have stayed to watch the second game of tonight's slate, as George Washington takes on the top-seeded North Carolina Tar Heels.

When it comes to fans, the GW fans are the loudest of the night. Their band is raucous, their fans are elated and have been cheering from the moment the team took the floor, and their spirit squad hasn't stopped smiling since they took the floor (which neither Purdue nor Georgia could claim).

The Tar Heels look very focused and business-like, as they look to carry the ACC banner into the Elite Eight, while the Colonials look elated to just be in Dallas, and will be playing with nothing to lose. With the chants of "Let's Go G-DUB" and George himself clapping right in front of me, we are underway here at Reunion Arena!

Dallas: Wrapping Up Purdue-UGA

We're about 10 minutes away from North Carolina and George Washington, and here are some stats and awards for tonight's first game of the Dallas Regional Semifinals.

Continue reading "Dallas: Wrapping Up Purdue-UGA" »

Dallas: Boiler Up! Purdue in Elite Eight

The train keeps rolling for Purdue, as the Boilers are now one game away from the Final Four.

Led by 30 points from Katie Gearlds and 24 from Lindsay Wisdom-Hylton, the Boilermakers eliminated Georgia tonight with a 78-65 win. The Purdue team is on the court applauding the band and fans tonight, as they were witness to a very slow start, followed by a roaring comeback where the momentum never ceased for the Boilers.

Georgia had a great run, but in the end, they couldn't match Purdue in the paint, and Tasha Humphrey couldn't do it all for the Bulldogs.

Purdue is in, as their male cheerleaders, estatic over the win, have come to slap high fives with the media.

UNC has taken the floor....it's the Tar Heels and Colonials in 25 minutes here from Dallas.

Dallas: Humphrey Making One Last Push

Tasha Humphrey is not ready to end this season, and with her Dogs down by 12, she decided to make one last push for Georgia, scoring the last five unanswered for the Bulldogs, and cutting the Purdue lead down to 70-63 with exactly three minutes to go in the game.

Georgia's bench is getting into it a little more, hoping that this could be the spark, and it just might be. Ashley Houts just picked up her fourth steal, and the Bulldogs have the ball, trying to cut the lead. Houts shoots a 3-pointer...but it hits off the rim no good, and Purdue will go back to the FT line.

Dallas: Gearlds Just Lights Out

No one is stopping Katie Gearlds this half, as she's shot everything here in Dallas successfully except for J.R. Ewing. With 28 points in the game, she's got Purdue in total control of this game, leading Georgia 70-58 with 3:48 to go in the game.

Georgia's tried to put everyone on Gearlds, and no one has been able to stop her in the second half. The Purdue fans are getting more raucous now, as they sense Elite Eight in their future. Meanwhile, some of the UGA fans have already filed out, thinking that the Bulldogs aren't going to be able to come back from this one.

From the looks on the faces of the Bulldog players, they're starting to doubt themselves a little as well.

Purdue's got the ball, up by a dozen, as play resumes.

Dallas: Humphrey Scores, Here Comes UGA

Just when it was 60-49 and you thought this one was in the bag for Purdue, here comes the Georgia Bulldogs. Tasha Humphrey came into the game and made a great reverse layup, and Megan Darrah answered with a long 3-pointer, cutting Purdue's lead to 60-54 with 7:13 to go in the game.

Georgia still has a lot of work to do. They're having fits inside, and Purdue continues to just bang their way into the interior, drawing fouls on the Bulldogs left and right.

Purdue Pete just grabbed his sledge and is staring at it like he wants to take a bite into the sledge. Seriously, there's popcorn in the media room...he can get something better to eat than a sledge hammer.

North Carolina's band has taken their seats next to the UGA band, as George Washington's just filed in to sit next to Purdue's. Both are watching intently to see if the Boilers can hold on.

Hylton at the line...misses the first...makes the second, and it's 61-54 Purdue now with 7:13 to go.

Dallas: Purdue Picking Up Steam

Lindsay Wisdom-Hylton is giving UGA fits, and if this keeps up, she'll be in Bulldog nightmares for years to come. She's got 19 points right now, and Katie Gearlds now has 18, as she's just launched another 3-pointer for the Boilers, and Purdue is racing past a stunned Georgia team, 53-45, with 10:35 to go in the game.

Georgia still hasn't found Humphrey...in fact, they took her out. Angel Robinson has six points this half though, and 10 for the game, as she tries to fill the huge void in the paint for Georgia.

Andy Landers has been screaming at the refs non-stop this half. Maybe it'll add some fuel to the UGA fire, but right now, it's all Old Gold and Black in Dallas.

Speaking of fouls...UGA has six this half, Purdue has just two. Wow.

Dallas: Paging Humphrey...Tasha Humphrey

So far, we've played 5:30 in the second half, and Tasha Humphrey has been marked, swarmed, and shut down by the Purdue defense, and so far it's killing the Bulldogs. Purdue has a 44-41 lead, and it's mostly in part because Humphrey is being challenged inside, and Purdue's zone has Georgia completely flustered.

I'm still saying UGA needs to get the ball in the hands of Houts a lot more. Yes, she's missed her first shot, but still, she's the player that can spark the Bulldogs back.

George Washington is watching from the front row, right near where I'm sitting. Not many expressions on the faces of the Colonials, who know they can't look ahead with North Carolina waiting them after this game.

Dallas: Boilers Take First Lead

Purdue has shown that big defecits mean NOTHING to them. Geralds and Hylton have struck again, and they have all the scoring so far, as Purdue takes a 40-36 lead on the Bulldogs.

Can Georgia answer at all? Yes they can, as Ashley Houts hits anothr trifecta to make it a 40-39 game. Houts has 11 points, and has yet to miss a shot today....why they aren't giving her the ball a LOT more is surprising to me.

17:53 to go, as the Boilers move upcourt, trying to build on their one-point lead.

Dallas: Halftime Stats of Close Game

Georgia raced out to an 18-6 lead, only to have Purdue storm back to cut the lead to 36-35 at the half.

Here's some stats of note...

FG Shooting:
Georgia: 13-24 (54.2%)
Purdue: 14-25 (56%)

Both teams shooting very well so far in this game.

Points in the Paint:
Georgia: 18
Purdue: 24

Where UGA dominated the paint early, Purdue owned it late.

Purdue Points:
Gearlds/Hylton: 24
Rest of Team: 11

Think Andy Landers put two targets out there for his 'Dogs to stop?

Purdue has the ball, as the second half just got underway here in Dallas.

Dallas: UGA Has Lead, Purdue Has Momentum

UGA is clinging to a 36-35 lead at halftime, as the Boilermakers finished the half on a 17-8 run over the last eight minutes. The Bulldogs have started to play sloppier, thanks in part to the furious Purdue defense, and the Boilers are answering with LaKisha Freeman, Katie Gearlds, and Lindsay Hylton all finding the net late.

The Bulldogs seem a little agitated, and halftime couldn't have come at a better time for Georgia. Meanwhile, Purdue is playing hard, and it's coming through with a great showing.

More to come as we're at the half.

Dallas: The Train's A Coming

Purdue has picked up some serious steam, and with 3:41 to go in the first half, they have a chance to cut the UGA lead to just five points. The great play of Lindsay Wisdom-Hylton has proven to make a difference in the last few minutes, as she's pushed the UGA defense with her own speed, and it's led to UGA overstepping on defense, and Purdue is finally getting the inside points they were looking for all half.

Hylton makes both free throws... she now has 10 points, and the lead is 32-27 with 3:41 to go.

Dallas: UGA Maintains Lead

Right now, Tasha Humphrey has nine points, and Purdue seems to have no answer for UGA's offense, which spells trouble for a team that really needs a run right now. Give the Boilers credit though for playing much more aggressively than earlier. The problem now for Purdue is finding a way to stop the Bulldog speed (as Tasha Humphrey flies down the paint for another layup...that's 11 for her now).

Meanwhile, we've spotted A'Quonesia Franklin of A&M in the stands. She was going to make it here no matter what.

It's 30-21 Georgia, as the story continues to be the great guard play of the Dogs, mixed in with the usual solid play of Humphrey.

Dallas: Houts vs. Gearlds

Think Ashley Houts is scared of anything?

We've got 13:16 to go...and Houts leads all scorers with six points, both on long 3-point attempts. She's got as many points as the entire Purdue team, and has been handling the ball with ease.

Meanwhile, Purdue's Katie Gearlds has been shut down for the most part, as the Bulldog D continues to smother her around the ball. The Boilers need other players to step up fast, especially with Erin Lawless on the bench with two early fouls.

It's 18-6 Bulldogs, with Purdue in possession of the ball.

Dallas: UGA Shows Bite Early

So far, UGA is in control, leading 10-4 with 15:38 to go in the first half.

The Dogs are doing it with great passing, as they are moving the ball around the perimeter with ease, spreading the Purdue defense and allowing Tasha Humphrey to have her way in the paint on the Boilers. Meanwhile, Purdue has managed to find their way inside for some points, but are having fits around the perimeter, as the quick UGA guards are causing havoc for the Boilers.

There are lots of Dallas schoolchildren who've been brought in to see this. Most are pulling for Georgia, especially the group behind me, who just screamed as Ashley Houts drained a 3-pointer to make it a 13-4 Bulldog lead.

Dallas: Warming Up Before The Show

The bands are in full swing, the players are on the floor, and we are 10 minutes away from Georgia and Purdue, in the first of two regional semifinal games here at Reunion Arena in the heart of downtown DGet allas.

Continue reading "Dallas: Warming Up Before The Show" »

Dallas: Four Teams, One Goal

Saving the best for last? Maybe so.

Welcome to Reunion Arena, where today, four teams take the floor with the goal of Cleveland on their minds. Upsets have been rampant (ask Duke and Oklahoma), and when tonight is done, we'll have two teams in the Elite Eight, with only three games seperating them from a national title.

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