Eleven BIG EAST women’s basketball teams were in action on Wednesday night over five conference games and one nonconference tilt. Cincinnati led the way with a 57-56 victory at USF for its first win at the Sun Dome since Jan. 24, 2003. No. 2/2 UConn, No. 6/7 West Virginia, No. 13/12 Notre Dame and No. 16/23 DePaul also won on Wednesday.
The Bearcats (8-6, 1-1 BIG EAST) were led by senior Shareese Ulis who scored 21 points and junior Bjonee Reaves who hit the tying and game-winning free throws with six seconds left to win it.
Ulis was 8-of-17 from the floor, including 4-of-9 from 3-point range. She also added four rebounds, three assists, a block, and a steal for the Bearcats, who earned their first BIG EAST win of the season.
Cincinnati led 36-24 at the half, but USF (9-7, 0-2 BIG EAST) came storming back. A 9-0 run to start the frame cut the Bearcats' lead to 37-34 before freshman Kayla Cook hit a pair of free throws to stop the bleeding. With UC leading 40-34, USF embarked on a 16-5 run to take its biggest lead of the game, 50-45, on a steal and layup by junior Jasmine Wynne at the 7:22 mark.
USF executed a perfect back-door layup for senior Porche Grant with 11 seconds to go, taking a one point advantage and setting up Reaves' heroics. The Bulls pressed following the made basket and Reaves took the inbounds pass up the far sideline and past her defender. She maneuvered all the way to the basket, where she was fouled attempting a layup with six seconds left. The junior college transfer calmly sank both shots for a 57-56 margin.
USF had one final chance, but Reaves was there again to poke the ball away from USF senior Leondra Doomes-Stephens and dribble out the clock.
UC shot just 5-of-25 in the second half, but hit 10-of-15 free throws. The Bulls got a team-leading 13 points from Doomes-Stephens.
Other action saw UConn (13-1, 3-0 BIG EAST) knock off Villanova (7-7, 0-2 BIG EAST) 81-35 in Storrs. Junior guard Tiffany Hayes had a game high 22 points, while senior Maya Moore added 16 points. UConn held 44-12 at halftime and never looked back.
West Virginia (15-0, 2-0 BIG EAST) extended its win streak to 15 games following a 67-46 victory at Seton Hall (7-8, 0-2 BIG EAST). Senior Liz Repella scored a season-high 24 points to lead the WVU offense.
Senior Devereaux Peters scored 18 points to lead Notre Dame (13-3, 2-0 BIG EAST) to a 73-55 victory over Marquette (12-3, 0-2 BIG EAST).
“Devereaux was just outstanding,” head coach Muffet McGraw said. “She was a human highlight film, I thought, on offense. She did just a fantastic job. She was always in the right spot and took advantage of the mismatch that she had.”
The 6-2 senior forward came in averaging 9.8 points, but had 12 in the first half for Notre Dame (13-3, 2-0 BIG EAST). She made 9 of 12 shots, grabbed eight rebounds, made four steals and blocked two shots as the Fighting Irish won their season-high eighth straight game.
DePaul (14-2, 2-0 BIG EAST) beat Providence (7-7, 0-2 BIG EAST) by the score of 71-38 at home holding the Friars to just 18 points in the first half. Junior Keisha Hampton had 11 points and eight rebounds, while sophomore Katherine Harry added 13 points.
Pittsburgh (8-6) lost to Duquesne 70-62. Senior Jania Sims had 21 points in the loss.
Material from interviews, the Associated Press wire service as well as league and team sources was used in this report.