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NCAA Women's Tournament 2012: Amber Orrange Leads Stanford Past West Virginia

By HANK KURZ Jr. 03/19/12 09:40 PM ET AP

Ncaa Womens Tournament Stanford West Virginia
Stanford forward Chiney Ogwumike (13) puts up a shot over West Virginia center Ayana Dunning (33) during the first half of an NCAA women's college basketball tournament second-round game in Norfolk, Va., Monday, March 19, 2012.

NORFOLK, Va. -- Freshman Amber Orrange scored a career-high 18 points and Stanford beat West Virginia 72-55 Monday night in the second round of the women's NCAA tournament.

Nnemkadi Ogwumike added 16 points and Chiney Ogwumike finished with 13 for the top-seeded Cardinal (33-1), who easily stretched their school-record winning streak to 30 games. The sisters were hampered by foul trouble, but Orrange also helped out with seven rebounds and five assists.

Ayana Dunning led the Mountaineers (24-10) with 14 points and Asya Buassie had 11, but West Virginia shot just 31 percent.

The Cardinal were leading 16-12 when Nnemkadi Ogwumike's two free throws sparked a 17-0 run. West Virginia went more than six minutes without scoring and trailed 33-14 when Dunning finally broke the drought with a 15-foot jumper.

Stanford remained in control for the rest of the game

The only bright spot for the Mountaineers during the big run by Stanford occurred when Nnemkadi Ogwumike, a national player of the year contender, picked up her second foul and went to the bench. But when she did, Orrange got aggressive, hitting a jumper and a driving layup on the next two possessions for the Cardinal, who carried a 38-21 lead into halftime.

Ogwumike went back to the bench after drawing her third foul with 16:08 to play and the Cardinal ahead 44-26. Ogwumike's absence slowed Stanford's offense, but West Virginia still struggled to score. The Mountaineers missed 10 of their first 12 shots after halftime, including several open looks, and only started converting from the field in the waning moments.

Stanford advances to the Fresno Regional, where it will be seeking a fifth straight trip to the Final Four.

The Mountaineers, meanwhile, continued a trend under coach Mike Carey in which they are a perfect 6-0 in first-round NCAA tournament games, but 0-6 in the second round.

In each of the last two seasons, they have been knocked out by a team featuring one of the top players in the country. Last year, it was Baylor and Brittney Griner.


Filed by Chris Greenberg  |