Cappie Pondexter scored 21 of her game-high 25 points in the second half as No. 6 Rutgers rallied for a 65-56 road victory over Princeton yesterday.
Pondexter, who also had four rebounds and three assists, was 7 for 14 and made all nine of her free throws. Essence Carson added 14 points and seven rebounds for Rutgers (8-0).
After the Scarlet Knights jumped to an early lead, Princeton (5-3) went on a 15-6 run and led 28-26 at halftime. It was just the second time this year that Rutgers has trailed at the break.
The Tigers then scored two baskets in the first 37 seconds of the second half, but Rutgers came back with Pondexter scoring eight points. Rutgers took the lead for good when Pondexter made a three-point play with 7 minutes 27 seconds left, igniting a 9-0 run.
Princeton used a high-tempo defense and solid perimeter shooting to stay close, but the Tigers could not hold off Rutgers down the stretch. Becky Brown had 14 points and 13 rebounds for the Tigers, while Katy O'Brien added 14 points and Meagan Cowher had 13.
* OHIO ST. 68, SOUTHERN CAL 57: Brandie Hoskins scored 20 points and Jessica Davenport added 15 points and a career-best 18 rebounds for the No. 4 Buckeyes in Los Angeles.
Camille LeNoir led the Women of Troy with 15 points, and Eshaya Murphy added 14.
Southern Cal went on a 9-1 run early in the second half and moved into a 39-all tie with 15:50 left. But Ohio State (6-0) pulled away from a tie at 42 with eight straight points for a 50-42 lead with 10:43 remaining. Kim Wilburn finished the run with back-to-back layups.
USC twice pulled within three, the last time at 54-51 with 6:05 remaining. Chloe Kerr's basket cut the deficit to four, 57-53, with 3:45 to play, but the Buckeyes responded with an 8-2 run, and led, 65-55, with 34 seconds to go.
The 11-point final margin was Ohio State's biggest lead of the game.
* PURDUE 70, VALPARAISO 55: Katie Gearlds scored 28 points, including six of nine three-pointers, and Aya Traore added 23 points for the No. 24 Boilermakers in Fort Wayne, Ind.
Betsy Rietema paced Valparaiso (4-4) with 13 points and Carrie Myers added 12.
Gearlds made consecutive three-pointers to cut Valparaiso's lead to 47-46. Purdue (6-2) took the lead for good on Erin Lawless's layup with 7:54 left.
* N.C. STATE 76, DELAWARE STATE 58: Tiffany Stansbury had 23 points and six rebounds to lead the No. 25 Wolfpack in Raleigh, N.C.
Ashley Key scored 10 of her 14 points after halftime for the Wolfpack (6-2), which dominated the second half to remain unbeaten in five home games this year. N.C. State improved to 22-1 all-time against Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference teams.
Raquel Collier scored 23 points to lead the Hornets (4-2), who went into the break tied at 34.