College

Perfect! Baylor Beats Notre Dame 80-61 For Title

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Players from the Baylor Bears support their teammates from the bench in the second half against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish during the National Final game of the 2012 NCAA Division I Women's Basketball Championship at Pepsi Center on April 3, 2012 in Denver, Colorado.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

Players from the Baylor Bears support their teammates from the bench in the second half against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish during the National Final game of the 2012 NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Championship at Pepsi Center on April 3, 2012 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

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DENVER (AP) — Brittney Griner came up big for Baylor, scoring 26 points and grabbing 13 rebounds to help the Lady Bears finish off an undefeated season with an 80-61 win over Notre Dame in the national championship game Tuesday night.

Baylor became the first team in NCAA history to win 40 games. Even more important to the Lady Bears, the team cut down the nets for the first time since 2005.

For the Fighting Irish (35-4), a second straight trip to the title game ended in heartbreak. They lost 76-70 to Texas A&M last season.

Odyssey Sims chipped in 19 for the Bears, while Destiny Williams added 12.

The Irish cut a sizable deficit to three points early in the second half, only to have Devereaux Peters called for an illegal screen, which was her fourth foul. With Peters on the bench, the Bears built their lead back up by dumping the ball into the 6-foot-8 Griner, who showed off her wide array of shots as she arched hooks and jumpers over the smaller Irish players.

(© 2012 by STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.)

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