Alexis Rack was perfect in eight trips to the foul line down the stretch, and 11th seed Mississippi State (23-9) was 21-for-22 as a team in beating No. 6 seed Texas (21-12), 71-63, yesterday in the first round of the NCAA tournament's Berkeley Regional in Columbus, Ohio.
"We've been doing this all year," said Rack, who had 20 points for her 13th consecutive game in double figures. "We shoot 100 free throws in practice. I felt like I was at practice. I felt comfortable and just focused."
San Diego State 76, DePaul 70:: Home-court advantage never looked so good to the Aztecs (24-7). Jene Morris tied her career high with 35 points to lead San Diego State over the seventh-seeded Blue Demons (23-10).
San Diego State, the 10th seed, improved to 15-0 this season at Cox Arena and ran its overall home winning streak to 17.
Natasha Williams scored 22 for DePaul.
Ohio State 77, Sacred Heart 63:: Samantha Prahalis scored a career-best 23 points, and Jantel Lavender had 19 points and 10 rebounds to lead the third-seeded Buckeyes (28-5) past the 14th-seeded Pioneers (25-8) in Columbus.
Ashlee Trebilcock had 13 points, and Maria Moeller added a career-high 12 for Ohio State, the Big Ten regular-season and tournament champions. The win was its ninth in a row.
North Carolina 85, Central Florida 80:: The Tar Heels nearly squandered a 14-point lead in the final 30 seconds, but Heather Claytor scored a season-high 17 points as the third-seeded Tar Heels (28-6) beat the 14th-seeded Knights (17-17) in the opening round in Chattanooga, Tenn.
Claytor came off the bench averaging 3.7 points and hit four of six from three-point range.
North Carolina used its size to shoot over smaller Central Florida, hitting nine of 20 from three-point range.
Auburn 85, Lehigh 49:: DeWanna Bonner scored 26 points and led an early 21-3 spurt that carried the second-seeded Tigers (30-3) to a victory over the 15th-seeded Mountain Hawks (26-7) in a first-round game in Piscataway, N.J.
Rutgers 57, Virginia Commonwealth 51:: Epiphanny Prince scored 26 points, including 10 during a decisive run in the second half, to lead the seventh-seeded Scarlet Knights (20-12) past the 10th-seeded Rams (26-7) in Piscataway.
Pittsburgh 64, Montana 35:: Shavonte Zellous scored 15 of her 31 points in the first half to keep the fourth-seeded Panthers (24-7) even with the energized and inspired Lady Grizzlies (28-5), a 13th seed, and Pittsburgh took over in the second half of a win in Seattle. Pitt held Montana to 10 second-half points, tying the tournament record for fewest points allowed in a half.
Vanderbilt 73, Western Carolina 44:: Christina Wirth scored 23 points and Jennifer Risper had 11 points and nine rebounds as the fourth-seeded Commodores (25-8) beat the 13th-seeded Lady Catamounts (21-12) in Albuquerque, N.M., ending Western Carolina's 10-game winning streak. Lauren Powell led Western Carolina with eight points. The Lady Catamounts shot just 28 percent (16-for-57) from the field.
Florida State 83, North Carolina A&T; 71:: Alysha Harvin scored 18 points to lead five players in double figures, and the third-seeded Seminoles (26-7) pulled away to beat the 14th-seeded Aggies (26-7) in Duluth.
California 70, Fresno State 47:: Ashley Walker scored 21 points for the Bears (26-6) and No. 4 seed California's defense overwhelmed the 13th-seeded Bulldogs in Los Angeles. LaShay Fears tied her career-high with 18 points, and Marnique Arnold grabbed 11 rebounds for Fresno State (24-9).