UNCASVILLE, Conn. (AP) — Kitija Laksa scored 18 points and Maria Jespersen added 14 points to go with 13 rebounds to lead South Florida to a 63-58 win over No. 25 Temple on Sunday night for the Bulls’ third-straight trip to the American Athletic Conference Tournament championship game.
No. 3 seed USF will play top-seeded and No. 1-ranked Connecticut for the final Monday.
The Bulls (24-7) pulled away in the fourth quarter with a 10-0 run capped by Laksa’s 3-pointer to go up 52-41 with 4:24 to play. Temple responded with three-straight buckets to cut the gap to five, and then trimmed its deficit to 61-58 with eight seconds left after a 3-pointer and two free throws from Alliya Butts.
Laksa hit two free throws two seconds later and Temple’s Feyonda Fitzgerald missed a 3-pointer at the other end.
Tamara Henshaw had 15 points for USF.
Fitzgerald led Temple (24-7) with 18 points, Butts had 17 and Tanaya Atkinson 15.