DOUG FEINBERG, AP Basketball Writer
BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (CBS Connecticut and AP) — Napheesa Collier had 27 points and 14 rebounds to help UConn beat UCLA 86-71 on Saturday, putting the Huskies in the Bridgeport Regional final.
The victory was the 110th straight for the No. 1 Huskies, who will face 10th-seeded Oregon on Monday night. The Ducks pulled off another upset, shocking Maryland to advance to their first Elite Eight.
Buoyed by the success of their Pac-12 partner, the fourth-seed Bruins jumped out a 9-2 lead over UConn (35-0) before the Huskies scored 17 of the next 19 points. The seven-point deficit matched the Huskies’ largest this season.
The Huskies led by nine after one quarter and 17 at the half.
The victory tied Geno Auriemma with Pat Summitt for most NCAA Tournament victories. The two Hall of Fame coaches have 112 tournament victories.
Jordin Canada had 20 points and 11 assists for UCLA (25-9).
The Bruins cut into a 19-point deficit in the third quarter, making it 62-50 with seven straight points late in the period. Monique Billings sandwiched two baskets around a Kari Korver 3-pointer.
But Collier and Saniya Chong combined to score the next 11 points for UConn during an 11-4 burst to put the game away.
Billings finished with 17 points and 16 rebounds for UCLA.
Gabby Williams had 17 points, nine rebounds and six assists for the Huskies.
UCLA: This was the first time in program history the Bruins reached the Sweet 16 in consecutive seasons. UCLA’s best NCAA Tournament finish ever was reaching the regional final in 1999. … The Bruins fell to 0-4 all-time against UConn. The two teams will play again next year in California. … Canada’s assists were the most by a UConn opponent this season and she received a nice ovation from the crowd when she fouled out with just over a minute left.
UConn: Chong and Tierney Lawlor have a 151-1 record while at UConn, tying the school and NCAA record for most victories. … The win was the Huskies’ 27th straight in the NCAA Tournament. … Florida State led UConn by seven in the second half of the season opener. … Katie Lou Samuelson scored 14 of her 15 points in the first half. Her only point of the second half came on a free throw with 20 seconds left.
UConn will face Oregon on Monday night with a trip to the Final Four on the line.
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