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U women clamp down on defense, upset No. 17 Rutgers

 


– 60-46 Sunday at Williams Arena.

In a matchup with the Big Ten’s best defensive team, it was the Gophers who put the clamps on Rutgers (17-5, 9-2 in the Big Ten), rallying from a five-point third-quarter deficit with 11 straight points to take the lead for good.

For the Gophers (15-7, 4-7), it was their second straight victory and their second victory this season over a ranked team.

Rutgers led 31-26 with 3:36 left in the third quarter. Over the final 13 minutes and 36 seconds the Gophers out-scored the Scarlet Knights 34-15.

Taiye Bello led the way, scoring 11 points with an incredible 21 rebounds. Kenisha Bell had 19 points and five assists. Destiny Pitts scored 14 and Jasmine Brunson had 13.

Stasha Carey (16) was the only Rutgers player in double figures.

The Gophers were down 31-26 mid-way through the third quarter when things finally clicked. A three-point play by Bell started an 11-0 run that also included three-point plays by Bello and Brunson; Brunson got a rebound, went the length of the floor, scored and hit the free throw to end the run. After Rutgers finally got a basket, Bell hit two more free throws, giving the Gophers a 13-2 run to end the third and a 39-33 lead entering the fourth.

Up ten, the Gophers let Rutgers pull within five. But Pitts hit a corner three, Bell drove, scored and hit the free throw and the Gophers were back in control.

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