STORRS, Conn. — Freshman Katie Lou Samuelson scored 22 points as UConn began its quest for a fourth consecutive national title with a 101-49 rout of Robert Morris on Saturday in the tournament’s first round.

Two-time national player of the year Breanna Stewart added 18 points for the Huskies (33-0), who are working toward the program’s 11th NCAA championship.

Anna Niki Stamolamprou had 11 for Robert Morris (20-13) in the final game for Coach Sal Buscaglia, who is retiring after a 38-year career.

The Huskies have won 70 consecutive games, which matches the second-longest winning streak in team and NCAA history.

They led by 49 points at halftime and 61 after three quarters.

The win sends the Huskies to the second round for the 23rd straight season, where they face Duquesne.

Moriah Jefferson and Kia Nurse each scored 14 points while combining for 11 assists. Morgan Tuck added 13 points and eight rebounds.

Stewart also had eight steals and three blocked shots, giving her 398 blocks for her career, first place on the school’s all-time list.

UConn put the game away in that quarter, led by 10 points each from Stewart and Samuelson.

Nurse hit a 3-pointer from the right baseline 19 seconds into the game and the Huskies never trailed. The Huskies used a 22-0 run to lead 41-4 after 10 minutes.

UConn took its first 50-point lead at 60-9 on a pair of free throws from Natalie Butler and led 64-15 at halftime.

Robert Morris turned the ball over 29 times, and the Huskies scored 50 points off those.

Buscaglia announced last year that this would be his final season after coaching stints at Hilbert College, Buffalo and Manhattan. He finishes his career 711-369 and 224-178 at Robert Morris. His first game as a head coach was a 105-17 loss, and he joked that he was worried about coming full circle.

DUQUESNE 97, SETON HALL 76: Deva’Nyar Workman scored a career-high 25 points and grabbed 12 rebounds to lead ninth-seeded Duquesne (28-5) to a successful NCAA debut with a win over Seton Hall (23-9) at Storrs, Connecticut.

Workman led four players in double figures for the Dukes, who used a 15-0 third-quarter run to stretch a six-point halftime lead.

UCLA 66, HAWAII 50: Nirra Fields scored 16 points and Monique Burke added 15 as the third-seeded Bruins (25-8) defeated a cold-shooting Hawai’i (21-11) at Los Angeles.

Jordin Canada added 10 points while the 10th-ranked Bruins employed an aggressive zone defense that held the Rainbow Wahine to a season-low 12 baskets.

MISSOURI 78, BYU 69: Freshman Sophie Cunningham scored 20 points, most of it in a dominant third quarter, and No. 10 Missouri (22-9) upset BYU (26-7) at Austin, Texas, for the Tigers’ first NCAA Tournament win since 2001.

Cunningham scored 16 in the third as Missouri built an 11-point lead then held on down the stretch when BYU got within 62-60 midway through the fourth.

BYU’s Lexi Rydalch had 22 points, but just seven after halftime.


FLORIDA STATE 72, MIDDLE TENNESSEE STATE 55: Junior guard Leticia Romero scored 17 points to lead the fifth-seeded Seminoles (24-7) past Middle Tennessee (24-10) at College Station, Texas.

The Blue Raiders kept the game close until the Seminoles went on an 11-4 run late in the third quarter.

TEXAS A&M 74, MISSOURI STATE 65: Freshman Anriel Howard set an NCAA tournament record with 27 rebounds, Courtney Walker scored 29 points and Texas A&M (22-9) overcame the absence of starter Courtney Williams to beat Missouri State (24-10) at College Station, Texas.

Before the game the fourth-seeded Aggies suspended Walker and Shlonte Allen for a violation of team rules.


NOTRE DAME 95, NORTH CAROLINA A&T 61: Brianna Turner scored 16 points, Madison Cable added 14 points and seven rebounds and top-seeded Notre Dame (32-1) dominated inside to beat North Carolina A&T (19-12) at South Bend, Indiana.

Kathryn Westbeld added 12 points as the Fighting Irish won their 29th straight at home.

SOUTH DAKOTA STATE 74, MIAMI 71: Macy Miller and Gabby Boever combined for three free throws in the final 35.6 seconds to bail out their teammates’ poor shooting late at the line, and 12th-seeded South Dakota State stunned No. 5 seed Miami (24-9) at Stanford, California.

Miller finished with 18 points, while Madison Guebert scored 19 as the Jackrabbits (27-6) survived their second-half struggles handling the Hurricanes’ trapping full-court press.

OKLAHOMA 61, PURDUE 45: Peyton Little scored 20 points, Maddie Manning added 12 and Oklahoma (22-10) blocked 13 shots to shut down 11th-seeded Purdue (20-12) at Lexington, Kentucky.

The Sooners held Purdue to just 28 percent shooting.

KENTUCKY 85, UNC ASHEVILLE 31: Makayla Epps scored 24 points and Kentucky (24-7) routed UNC Asheville (26-7) at Lexington for the biggest NCAA tournament victory margin in school history.

MARYLAND 74, IONA 58: Shatori Walker-Kimbrough scored 19 points, and second-seeded Maryland ruined Iona’s debut in the NCAA tournament with a sloppy victory at College Park, Maryland.

The Terrapins (31-3) let a 19-point lead dwindle to 60-53 early in the fourth quarter before finally pulling away from the Gaels (23-12).

WASHINGTON 65, PENN 53: Kelsey Plum and Washington (23-10) finally got going on offense and prevented an Ivy League surprise, with the nation’s third-leading scorer producing 24 points and seven assists in the Huskies’ victory over Penn (24-5) at College Park, Maryland.

Plum shot only 9 for 25 but took over late, scoring or assisting on Washington’s first 14 points of the fourth quarter, breaking open a tight game.

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