Stanford Routs FSU 88-70, Faces Sweet 16 Showdown With Oklahoma
March 20, 2006
DENVER (AP) - At this rate, Candice Wiggins will rewrite the record book at Stanford. Might bring a title or two back to The Farm, as well.
The sensational sophomore finished with 34 points and seven rebounds Monday night to lift the Cardinal into the third round of the NCAA tournament with an 88-70 victory over Florida State.
Wiggins, the two-time Pac-10 player of the year, put third-seeded Stanford (25-7) up by double digits with a 17-foot jumper to open the second half and three 3-pointers over the next 10 minutes.
After sixth-seeded Florida State (20-10) briefly cut the deficit below 10, Wiggins passed to Krista Rappahahn for an open 3-pointer that she hit, spotted up to make one of her own and sank two free throws to make it 78-62 with 3:30 left.
By the end, Wiggins had surpassed 30 points for the fifth time this season and moved to 17th on Stanford's all-time scoring list with half her career yet to go. Her 19.5-point career average is nearly two points higher than the next player on the list, Jeanne Ruark Hoff (1978-83).
The Cardinal, seeking their first national title since 1992, advanced to the San Antonio Regional - the fourth time in five years they've made it this far. Next, they play second-seeded Oklahoma, an 86-70 winner over Brigham Young earlier in the evening.
Florida State, an up-and-coming program still looking for its first trip out of the first weekend, got a super effort from Shante Williams off the bench: She went 9-for-11 for 23 points. But starting center Britany Miller got in early foul trouble and finished with only six points, part of an evening in which the Seminoles were slowly and systematically overmatched.
Stanford's Brooke Smith finished with 22 points and 13 rebounds. Jillian Harmon had 11. By the end, the Stanford band was taunting FSU, screaming 'It just doesn't matter,' and the FSU band was yelling back, 'Go do your homework' - all of it audible thanks to an unusually small crowd of 3,436 at the Pepsi Center. Earlier, Stanford's tree mascot got ejected for not leaving the court at halftime in a timely manner.
Coach Tara VanDerveer won her 659th career game and led Stanford to the round of 16 for the 13th time.