Baylor has just two wins to go for 40-0. Tennessee’s future is far less certain.
Brittney Griner had 23 points, 15 rebounds and nine blocks before being ejected with less than a minute left and top-seeded Baylor rolled over Tennessee 77-58 Monday night to advance to the Final Four.
“We’re so happy, but you can’t relax,” Baylor’s Destiny Williams said. “We have two more games left.”
Shekinna Stricklen had 22 points for Tennessee (27-9), whose seniors became its first four-year class not to reach a Final Four.
The second-seeded Lady Vols now face an uncertain future, as Pat Summitt has yet to say if she’ll return for a 39th season as Tennessee coach. She announced in August she’d been diagnosed with early onset dementia, Alzheimer’s type.
“This team is about Pat Summitt. This team has battled all year,” said Tennessee associate head coach Holly Warlick as she fought back tears. “I’m proud of them. I thought our team and coaching staff obviously was in a difficult situation. But I thought this team was responsive. I wouldn’t trade anything that we did this year.”
For me, it was a difficult game to watch. We just couldn’t get it inside offensively and didn’t hit our jumpers. And we packed the box around Griner, which worked for most of the game, but shockingly, Baylor’s guards just nailed three after three. They just killed us! It was thoroughly depressing, and since I feel Pat Summitt will likely retire now, it’s a sad way to end her impressive career….