Iowa and LSU women battle for a spot in the Final Four

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Two of the biggest names in women’s basketball were meeting Monday night in Albany, New York, with a trip to the Final Four on the line.

This year’s matchup between Iowa’s Caitlin Clark and LSU’s Angel Reese comes earlier in the tournament than last year, when they faced off for the national championship.

LSU won that one, and Clark has had her eye on the title ever since in her record-breaking senior year.

If Iowa loses, it will be all-star Clark’s last game as a collegiate athlete before she enters the WNBA draft.

As the Elite Eight game kicked off at MVP Arena, Iowa was off to an early lead, but Reese and LSU responded and pulled ahead going into the second quarter.

Reese was pulled in the second quarter with what appeared to be an ankle injury. Though she was seen limping court-side, Reese quickly returned to the game with a little over 6 minutes remaining.

LSU led for much of the second quarter, but the first half ended level at 45-45. Clark twice made her way through the lane to score and assist to give the Hawkeyes the lead, but Flau’jae Johnson ran up the other end and tied the game by spinning away from her defender and hooking in the basket.

Iowa guard Caitlin Clark drives against LSU guard Hailey Van Lith  during the first quarter of an Elite Eight round college basketball game during the NCAA Tournament, Monday, April 1, 2024, in Albany, N.Y.
Iowa guard Caitlin Clark drives against LSU guard Hailey Van Lith on Monday night.Hans Pennink / AP

The winner will play either the USC Trojans or the Connecticut Huskies. That game starts at 9 p.m. ET Monday.

The No. 3-seed Huskies are narrowly expected to claim the last spot in the Final Four, with Action Network putting them as three-point favorites over No. 1 seed USC.

Undefeated No. 1 seed South Carolina and No. 3 seed North Carolina State already claimed their tickets to the semifinal round Sunday, and they will face off Friday at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse in Cleveland.

The women’s NCAA championship game will be at 7 p.m. Sunday, also at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, and it will feature the winners of each Final Four matchup.

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