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NCAA Women's Tournament Recap (Harvard-Stanford)
Posted: Sun March 15, 1998 at 3:38 a.m ESTHarvard became the first 16th seed in the history of the NCAA Tournament -- men's or women's -- to beat a number one seed, shocking host Stanford, 71-67, in a West Region first-round game behind a monstrous effort from Allison Feaster. Feaster, who led the nation in scoring, poured in 35 points and grabbed 13 rebounds to lead the Ivy League champions (23-4), who will face ninth-seeded Arkansas in Monday's second round at Palo Alto, California. Stanford, playing without leading scorer Kristin Folkl as well as starting forward Vanessa Nygaard, finished its season at 21-5. The Cardinal, who had won 15 straight games, had their 59-game winning streak at Maples Pavilion snapped. They had not lost there since the 1994 West Region final, the last time Stanford failed to reach the Final Four. Harvard shot 62.5 percent in the first half and raced to a 43-34 lead. The lead grew to 10 early in the second half on a three-pointer by Feaster, but Stanford regrouped and used an 11-2 surge, opened and closed with three-pointers from Melody Peterson, to close within 50-49 with 12:03 to play. Feaster converted a three-point play just under a minute later to push the lead to four, but Olympia Scott knocked down a pair of jumpers before Heather Owen sank two foul shots to put the Cardinal ahead for the first time since the opening minute of the game at 55-53 with 9:26 remaining. The Crimson came right back and eventually grabbed a 62-59 on Feaster's layup with 4:47 left. Owen hit a nine-footer and Scott made four foul shots to give Stanford its largest lead at 65-62 with 2:57 remaining, but Feaster answered with a layup before Suzie Miller made consecutive huge plays. With 1:32 to go, Miller drained a 16-footer to give Harvard the lead for good. After a timeout, she buried a three-pointer from the left side with 46 seconds left for a 69-65 advantage. Feaster followed with a steal and free throw to make it a five-point game with 28 seconds to go. Regan Freuen opened the game with a three-pointer for Stanford, but it was all Harvard from there. The Crimson used a 9-0 spurt to turn a one-point lead into a 16-6 cushion after a layup by Sarah Russell at the 12:47 mark. Harvard led by as much as 21-9 on Feaster's two free throws with 9:22 remaining in the half. Stanford eventually came back and actually took the lead when Freuen's three-pointer made it 34-33 with 2:42 left in the half. But Miller and Russell nailed consecutive three-pointers to ignite a 10-0 burst as the Crimson brought a 43-34 lead into the break behind Feaster's 16 points. Miller finished with 12 points and Russell had 11 for the Crimson, who shot 46 percent (24-of-52) from the field and outrebounded Stanford, 41-37. Freuen had 19 points and Scott added 18 points and eight rebounds for the Cardinal, who hit just 19-of-57 (33 percent) shots. Owen chipped in 10 points and eight boards.
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