Stanford holds off Arizona 54-53 to win women's NCAA title

By DOUG FEINBERG AP Basketball Writer

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Haley Jones scored 17 points and Stanford beat Arizona 54-53, giving the Cardinal and coach Tara VanDerveer their first national championship in 29 years.

It wasn't a masterpiece by any stretch with both teams struggling to score and missing easy layups and shots, but Stanford did just enough to pull off the win surviving a miss by Aari McDonald that bounced off the rim at the buzzer.

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The 54-53 title victory is Stanford's third national title in program history and the first since 1992. Stanford's Haley Jones finished with 17 points and eight rebounds to lead the Cardinal to the title win and earn the sophomore forward the Most Outstanding Player of the 2021 NCAA Tournament award.

Stanford's three titles ties Baylor for the third most in women's basketball history, only trailing Connecticut (11) and Tennessee (eight) for most-ever in women's college basketball history.

Sunday night's outing was also the first time two Pac-12 teams have ever met in a national title game.

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