Kelsey Plum Guard, Washington
The senior became the all-time scoring leader in NCAA women’s basketball Saturday — by nearly breaking the record for points in a game. Plum celebrated her final home game by scoring 57 points, three short of the NCAA record, in an 8477 victory over Utah. She passed Jackie Stiles of Southwest Missouri State for the career mark with 3,397 points. That puts her 270 points behind Pete Maravich of LSU among all Division I players, men or women. Plum, who leads the nation with 31.6 points per game, told the Seattle Times last week that she doesn’t care about the scoring record. Her goal: to join “the 180 club,” a rarely achieved shooters’ benchmark of 50 percent from the field, 40 percent on three-pointers and 90 percent on free throws for a season. After Saturday, those numbers are at 53.7, 43.6 and 88.7. With teams hanging around the bubble because there’s no one better to consider, it’s refreshing to see one playing its way into an NCAA tournament berth. That would be Michigan (19-10, 9-7 Big Ten), whose thorough victory over Purdue was its fifth win in six games. That includes three of its four best wins of the season in terms of Rating Percentage Index: over Purdue, Wisconsin and Michigan State.
There’s losing games, and there’s losing players. South Florida did both. Interim coach Murry Bartow issued a statement Saturday apologizing for an “unfortunate circumstance” that resulted in two players being left off the team flight home a day after a loss at Tulsa. According to the Tampa Tribune, guards Troy Holston and Geno Thorpe flew Friday with the team to Houston, where they fell asleep in the airport. They awoke to find the rest of the team and staff had boarded the connecting flight. Though the plane was still at the gate, no one else was allowed on. Holston and Thorpe got “on the very next flight to Tampa,” Bartow said, about three hours later. That wasn’t good enough for Holston’s mother, Monique Holston-Greene. Reached by the Tribune, she took a shot at the state of the 7-20 Bulls, saying, “It’s very disappointing, and it’s a reflection of how terrible a program the men’s basketball program is.”