With three No. 1 seeds advancing to the Final Four of the 2021 NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament, there will be plenty of firepower as the two of them will advance to play each other on Friday night as the Stanford Cardinal take on the South Carolina Gamecocks in the first game of the 2021 Women’s Final Four.
This game will take place on Friday, April 2nd at 6:00 p.m. on ESPN, and once odds are available from DraftKings Sportsbook we’ll be sure to post them here.
No. 1 South Carolina 26-4 (14-2 SEC)
First Round: Defeated No. 16 Mercer 79-53
Second Round: Defeated No. 8 Oregon State 59-42
Third Round: Defeated No. 5 Georgia Tech 76-65
Fourth Round: Defeated No. 6 Texas 62-34
Leading scorer: Zia Cooke (15.6 ppg)
Key stat of tournament: South Carolina kept Texas from scoring in the entire fourth quarter of their last game.
The Gamecocks do it with defense, averaging 51.4 rebounds per game, good for fourth in the country. They also hold their opponents to just 36.2% from the field and a microscopic 26.9% from three-point range. The only major conference teams ahead of them in that category? Ohio State... and Stanford.
The key to this one might not be Cooke’s offense, but how can the Gamecocks score in the paint. Victaria Saxton’s play on the post will be a key matchup as she defends the bigs of Stanford.
No. 1 Stanford 29-2 (19-2 Pac-12)
First Round: Defeated No. 16 Utah Valley 86-44
Second Round: Defeated No. 8 Oklahoma State 73-62
Third Round: Defeated No. 5 Missouri State 89-62
Fourth Round: Defeated No. 2 Louisville 78-63
Leading scorer: Kiana Williams (14.5 ppg)
Key stat: The Cardinal haven’t lost since back-to-back Pac-12 losses on January 22nd.
Kiana Williams and Haley Jones are one of the lethal 1-2 guard combinations in women’s basketball. Williams is a senior that is less offensively efficient, but brings senior leadership and stability to a talented team. Jones is one of the rising young freshman in the game who can be a playmaker from her own offense.
The edge Stanford might have here is in depth and post play. Cameron Brink and Francesca Belibi will need to rebound well to give the Cardinal a chance, but they should be able to get some points as well.
Odds from DraftKings Sportsbook
Point spread: Stanford -5.5
Point total: 134.0
Moneyline: Stanford -230, South Carolina +185
Against The Spread Pick: South Carolina +5.5
Point total pick: Under 134
Pick to Win: Stanford
Anticipate this one getting tight defensively with both teams grinding out each possession. Because of that, both a South Carolina cover and the under will be in play here but Stanford’s depth will be what puts them over the top.
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