By The Associated Press
DALLAS (AP) — Jasmine Carson was nearly perfect from the field to help LSU put on a record-breaking performance in the NCAA Tournament championship game.
Carson scored 21 of her 22 points in the first half as the Tigers torched Iowa’s defense in a 102-85 victory on Sunday.
The 102 points was the most ever scored in a championship game by a single team and the 187 combined total also shattered the previous mark.
“So much for my hollering defense and rebounding, right? That’s a lot of points,” LSU coach Kim Mulkey said.
Carson was a big reason why. She made all seven of her shots in the first half, including four 3-pointers, as LSU put up 59 points in the first 20 minutes. It was the highest-scoring first half in the title game.
Carson was so hot from the field that the graduate student banked in a 3-pointer to end the half.
“I would definitely say this is the game of my life because I won a national championship on the biggest stage possible in college,” Carson said. “But when I woke up, I just wanted to win. I wanted to do anything that my team needed in this game, whether it was defense, rebounding, just anything, supporting them.”
LSU’s 59 points surpassed the 55 that Tennessee scored in the first half against Louisiana Tech in the 1998 title game. Tennessee won that game 93-75.
The 102 broke the mark set by Texas against Southern California in 1986. The teams combined for 178 in that game which also was the previous record until Sunday’s game.