Most college basketball teams this time of year are looking to get that one victory that will make the right impression on the NCAA tournament commitee. The USF women fell just short of that Sunday, but might have been impressive enough in defeat to merit a spot in the field.
The Bulls pushed No. 2 Notre Dame in the Big East quarterfinals before losing 76-66 in Hartford.
USF held Notre Dame star Skylar Diggins to a 5-of-21 day from the floor but could not contain Natalie Achonwa, who had 20 points and 20 rebounds. She became the first 20-20 performer in the Big East tourney since Rebecca Lobo in 1993.
After trailing by six at halftime USF came out sizzling and took a 51-47 lead. Notre Dame responded with the next eight points.
Andrell Smith poured in 27 points for the Bulls while sister Andrea had 18. USF is 21-10 and appears to have what it will take to receive an NCAA at-large invitation. The field will be announced next Monday.
USF has made the tournament once in its history.
Click HERE for a full recap courtesy USF's website.
Saturday's come-from-behind victory against Rutgers was considered necessary for USF's at-large hopes. Rutgers led 14-3 at one point but the Bulls won 42-39.