Brink powers Stanford through Arizona in NCAA title rematch 75-69

Cameron Brink dominated in the paint at both ends of the court and finished with 25 points, 15 rebounds and three blocked shots, leading defending national champion and No. 2 Stanford past eighth-ranked Arizona 75-69 Sunday in a long-awaited rematch. of the NCAA title game.

Brink threw up both arms in delight as the final bell rang.

Sophomore Jana Van Gytenbeek came off the bench and contributed to career-best six 3-pointers and 18 points as Stanford (16-3, 7-0 Pac-12) went undefeated in Pac-12 play with his eighth straight win since falling 65-61 to No. 1 South Carolina on Dec. 21.

Cate Reese scored 17 points for Arizona, which lost the NCAA Championship Game in April 54-53 to the Cardinal in an unprecedented all-Pac-12 final. Stanford won only the third national title in program history and the first since 1992.

Arizona coach Adia Barnes vowed before the start of this new season to push her Wildcats to be better from positive experience, even losing.

That date had been circled on both teams’ schedules since the schedules were released with the game as the only regular season matchup between the Pac-12 rivals – one of the four teams only faced one. only once during the 18-game conference schedule.

Brink hit all three of his first quarter shots to go with five rebounds and finished 10 for 12 from the floor on a day the Cardinal’s co-leading scorer Haley Jones struggled 2 of 12 for four points against the Pac-12 of the Wildcats. scoring defense that allowed 54.6 points per game coming into play on Sunday.

The Cardinal took an early 6-0 lead with Lexie Hull hitting the game’s first two baskets, but finished the first four straight shots missing with a 2:23 drought to hold a 17-16 advantage.

Shaina Pellington added 16 points, five rebounds and five assists for Arizona.

The Wildcats went the final 3:12 of the third without scoring, missing two field goals, a pair of free throws and committing two turnovers to fall behind 55-46.

TARA’S BOBBLEHEAD

Stanford celebrated Tara VanDerveer, the winningest women’s basketball coach of all time, with a bobblehead for the Hall of Fame coach.

Fans returned to the arena over the weekend and clamored for the unique memento after roughly a two-week hiatus allowing spectators to attend outside of friends and family as a precaution with the spike in coronavirus cases in the region of the bay.

BIG PICTURE

Arizona: The Wildcats missed their second win against a top-10 opponent this season after beating Louisville in overtime on Nov. 15. … Arizona was trying to win 16 of its first 18 games for the first time in program history. … The Wildcats saw their three-game winning streak shattered.

Stanford: The Cardinal gave up 22 points on his 18 turnovers but held a 34-26 rebounding advantage. … Stanford overcame a slow start from the 3-point line to finish 9 of 19 from deep, thanks in large part to precision from Van Gytenbeek. … The Cardinal improved to 5-3 against the top 25 opponents this season.

FOLLOWING

Arizona: Friday night host Oregon is looking to avenge a 68-66 overtime loss to the Ducks in Eugene on Jan. 15.

Stanford: At UCLA Thursday night.

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More AP Women’s College Basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/womens-college-basketball and https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-womens-college-basketball-poll and https https://twitter.com/AP_Top25

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