BATON ROUGE, La. — Adrienne Webb pumped a fist in the air as she was lifted up by teammate Theresa Plaisance, basking in the wild cheers of the heavily pro-LSU crowd.
With the best shooting night of her career and a relentless effort on defense, the feisty senior guard helped send LSU through to the regional semifinals for the first time since 2008.
Webb scored a career-high 29 points, including two crucial free throws with 22 seconds left, and LSU upset third-seeded Penn State 71-66 in the second round of the NCAA tournament on Tuesday night.
“I had to play my hardest in (potentially) our last game, because it’s do or die,” said Webb, who also defended Big Ten player of the year Maggie Lucas and helped hold her to 2-for-10 shooting. “I really had to assert myself.”
Bianca Lutley overcame foul trouble and scored 18 points, including a tough floater in traffic in the final minute to give LSU the lead and added another key free throw to make it a four-point game with 8.3 seconds to go.
Webb was 10 of 16 in what would have been her last game had No. 6 seed LSU (22-11) lost. Instead, she carried LSU to a Spokane Regional semifinal against California on a night when the Lady Tigers had only seven available players.
In Tuesday’s other games:
OKLAHOMA CITY REGIONAL
BAYLOR 85, FLORIDA STATE 47
WACO, Texas — Brittney Griner provided a most appropriate goodbye in her final home game for Baylor: a trio of dunks and another double-double.
Griner had 33 points and a career-high 22 rebounds to go with her three highlight dunks to lead the defending national champions to victory.
LOUISVILLE 76, PURDUE 63
LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Sara Hammond had 21 points and 10 rebounds to help Louisville advance to the round of 16 for the second time in three years and fourth time in six years.
With men’s coach Rick Pitino watching from the stands, Antonita Slaughter scored 14 of her 16 points in the first half for the fifth-seeded Cardinals (26-8).
DELAWARE 78, NC 69
NEWARK, Del. — Elena Delle Donne scored 33 points in her final home game, and Delaware rallied past foul-plagued North Carolina to advance to the round of 16 for the first time in school history.
The sixth-seeded Blue Hens (32-3) trailed 50-42 with 15:31 left before coming back to extend their school-record winning streak to 27 games and eliminate No. 3 seed North Carolina (29-7). Delaware will travel to Connecticut to face second-seeded Kentucky in the Bridgeport Regional semifinals Saturday.
KENTUCKY 84, DAYTON 70
NEW YORK — A’dia Mathies followed the worst game of her career with one of her best, matching a personal high with 34 points to lead second-seeded Kentucky over seventh-seeded Dayton.
With Kentucky (29-5) clinging to a 46-44 advantage early in the second half, Mathies scored 10 points during a 16-3 run to help the Wildcats take control.
NOTRE DAME 74, IOWA 57
IOWA CITY, Iowa — Kayla McBride scored a career-high 28 points and top-seeded Notre Dame extended its school-record winning streak to 28 games.
Skylar Diggins had 16 points for the Fighting Irish (33-1).
The Fighting Irish will play 12th-seeded Kansas in the regional semifinals in Norfolk, Va., on Sunday.
DUKE 68, OKLAHOMA STATE 59
DURHAM, N.C. — Elizabeth Williams had 16 points and 12 rebounds, and Duke rallied for the victory.
Haley Peters added 15 points and 13 rebounds, while Tricia Liston scored eight of her 13 in the final 6-plus minutes and Chloe Wells also finished with 13 points for the second-seeded Blue Devils (32-2). They advance to face sixth-seeded Nebraska in the regional semifinals Sunday.
STANFORD 73, MICHIGAN 40
STANFORD, Calif. — Joslyn Tinkle made a career-high five 3-pointers on the way to 21 points in her final home game at Maples Pavilion, and top-seeded Stanford used a spectacular perimeter shooting performance to rout No. 8 seed Michigan and reach the regional semifinals.
Chiney Ogwumike added 12 points and 15 rebounds for the Cardinal (33-2), who won their 19th straight game to set up a matchup with fourth-seeded Georgia on Saturday.
Jenny Ryan scored 11 points in her final college game to lead Michigan (22-11), which matched its second-lowest scoring output all season.