Just 11 teams remain undefeated in NCAA women’s basketball.

Pac-12 rivals UCLA and USC are among them, with both likely to remain so heading into their Dec. 30 meeting. Before that top-10 contest, No. 2 UCLA will face Hawaii at 4 p.m. ET Wednesday, and No. 6 USC will go up against Long Beach State at 5 p.m. ET Wednesday.

USC is led by freshman phenom JuJu Watkins, who has five 30-point performances through nine games. Her 26.8 points per game is second among all scorers, behind only Iowa’s Caitlin Clark. UCLA also features a star-studded roster, including sophomores Lauren Betts and Kiki Rice.

The undefeated South Carolina Gamecocks remain the unanimous No. 1 pick in the AP Top 25. Their next game against a ranked opponent comes on Jan. 25 against No. 7 LSU.

The full list of teams undefeated as of noon ET on Dec. 20 includes:

  • No. 1 South Carolina (11-0)
  • No. 2 UCLA (10-0)
  • No. 3 NC State (11-0)
  • No. 5 Texas (11-0)
  • No. 6 USC (9-0)
  • No. 10 Baylor (9-0)
  • No. 18 Marquette (11-0)
  • No. 23 Washington (11-0)
  • No. 25 TCU (11-0)
  • West Virginia (10-0)
  • Oregon State (9-0)

In the 2022-23 season, South Carolina went undefeated until the Final Four, when the Gamecocks lost to Iowa. Just nine teams have gone undefeated en route to a national championship: Texas (1985-86), Tennessee (1997-98), Baylor (2011-12) and UConn (1994-95, 2001-02, 2008-09, 2009-10, 2013-14, 2015-16).

A number of teams this season have just one loss so far, including Iowa (11-1) and LSU (11-1).

No. 2 UConn basketball was upset by an unranked NC State team on Saturday evening, 92-81. The last time the Wolfpack beat the Huskies came in the 1998 Elite Eight.

NC State junior Saniya Rivers stood out as the player of the match, draining 33 points and grabbing 11 rebounds for her squad. Rivers also drew fouls throughout the game, and she shot 10-14 from the free-throw line.

UConn head coach Gino Auriemma told his NC State counterpart Wes Moore that the Wolfpack team is “10 times better than last year,” as CT Insider’s Maggie Vanoni reported after the game.

“Everything they did was better than ours. … They were just on top of their game more than I remember. We got our asses beat plain and simple,” Auriemma said.

The Huskies made a palpable offensive effort, with two of their starters bagging over 20 points — Paige Bueckers dropped 27, while Aaliyah Edwards contributed 21. Bueckers was playing in her second game since her return from an ACL injury.

However, UConn struggled on the defensive end of the court. Four out of five Husky starters were in foul trouble by the end of the game, racking up at least four fouls, with Nika Mühl fouling out.

“We weren’t mature enough to handle it,” Auriemma said of his team.

UConn grabbed 11 fewer rebounds than NC State, with 29 to the Wolfpack’s 41. NC State cashed in on 12 points off rebounds and 12 second-chance points.

“We’ve got a sh— attitude towards rebounding … and that’s got to change,” Auriemma said.

With UConn’s loss to NC State and No. 1 LSU’s season-opening loss to Colorado, the top two teams in the preseason AP Top 25 have lost before the second AP poll for the first time in at least 25 years, according to ESPN.

A total of 2 million viewers tuned in to watch the matchup between NC State and UConn in the Elite Eight, making it the most-watched Elite Eight game in the NCAA women’s tournament since 2006.

It’s also the most-watched NCAA women’s basketball game of 2022.

The four Elite Eight games this season averaged 1.5 million viewers on ESPN, making the Elite Eight the most-watched round since 2011 and a 29 percent increase over 2021. Monday’s matchup between Michigan and Louisville had similar viewership, posting 1.6 million viewers making it the second-most watched game of the 2022 tournament thus far.

Overall, the NCAA women’s tournament viewership is up 11 percent over 2021.

This year’s tournament has been breaking records all over the board. In addition to higher viewership, the first and second rounds broke a nearly 20-year-old attendance record. All of this comes as the NCAA is reportedly considering a change to the television rights for women’s March Madness, which would have the rights sold as a separate entity from the 28 other sports it’s normally looped in with.

The tournament continues on Friday with the Final Four. South Carolina will take on Louisville at 7 p.m. ET while UConn and Stanford will face off at 9:30 p.m. ET for a spot in the championship game.

After a ferocious tug-of-war between No. 2 seed UConn and No. 1 seed NC State in Monday night’s Elite Eight contest in Bridgeport, Conn., the Huskies edged the Wolfpack 91-87 in double overtime.

A Christyn Williams layup with 5.2 seconds remaining in the second overtime put the game out of reach and sealed UConn’s 14th consecutive trip to the Final Four.

UConn star Paige Bueckers scored just four points in the first half but finished with a game-high 27 points overall. The sophomore tallied 15 points in overtime, including the first five points in the second overtime, to help her team clinch a berth in the NCAA tournament semifinals in Minneapolis, just miles from her hometown.

“Two days ago I said, ‘Win or go home,’” said Bueckers after the win. “But we won and I’m still going home!”

The Huskies will face another No. 1 seed in Stanford on Friday, while the Wolfpack missed out on what would have been their first Final Four appearance since 1998.

Jakia Brown-Turner led NC State with 20 points, including a 3-pointer over Bueckers with 0.8 seconds left in the first overtime to tie the score and force the second extra frame.

The game featured 18 ties and 26 lead changes.

UConn led by as many as 10 points in the first half but lost some energy after forward Dorka Juhász exited with an apparent wrist injury midway through the second quarter.

“This team has been through so much and it’s only made us stronger,” Bueckers said. “And if we see one of our sisters go down, we’re going to do it for her. We all love each other, we’re all so close. It just signifies what we’ve been through all year. Whole bunch of adversity, highs and lows, ups and downs. We stayed composed and we stayed together.”

No. 1 seed NC State came back to defeat No. 5 seed Notre Dame 66-63 in the Sweet 16 on Saturday.

Raina Perez delivered the game-winner, stripping Dara Mabrey of the ball at halfcourt and converting the breakaway layup to give the Wolfpack a one-point lead with 16 seconds left.

NC State overcame a double-digit deficit, outscoring Notre Dame 20-10 in the fourth quarter to pull out the win down the stretch.

The Fighting Irish gave up seven of their 16 turnovers in the fourth, allowing NC State a window to mount their comeback.

Elissa Cunane led the Wolfpack in points with 16 while adding ten rebounds. Kai Crutchfield notched 14 rebounds and four steals, while Perez added seven points and four steals.

Notre Dame shot 50.9 percent as a team, with Oliva Miles contributing a game-high 21 points.

NC State’s late push, however, secured their place in the Elite Eight, where they will face off against the winner of No. 2 UConn and No. 3 Indiana.


NC State snapped Miami’s upset streak on Sunday afternoon, downing the No. 7 seed 60-47 for the Wolfpack’s third consecutive ACC tournament championship.

Elissa Cunane led the charge for the No. 1 seed, notching 17 points and eight rebounds despite being sidelined for a portion of the third quarter with a tweaked ankle. The North Carolina native was emotional while speaking with ESPN after the game, saying, “I am so proud of us for doing this again.”

The Wolfpack held the Hurricanes to 31.5 percent shooting and allowed just one Miami player, Kelsey Marshall, to finish in double figures with 24 points. NC State road a 51-33 third-quarter lead through a quieter fourth quarter to contain the Hurricanes down the stretch.

With Sunday’s win, NC State officially punched its ticket to the NCAA Tournament.

Third-ranked NC State took down No. 23 Virginia Tech 68-66 on Sunday to secure the regular-season ACC title. It was NC State’s seventh win over a ranked opponent this season.

The Wolfpack scored 48 points in the paint to the Hokies’ 22. Turnovers were another key area in which NC State excelled, scoring 21 points off of turnovers to Virginia Tech’s seven. In the fourth quarter, however, they scored just eight points and watched a nine-point lead evaporate.

“We knew it was gonna be a battle all game,” Elissa Cunane told ACC Network postgame. “We knew it wasn’t going to be a blowout, that we would have to fight every possession.”

Cunane had the game-winning shot, breaking the 66-66 tie with 53 seconds left in the game. From there, NC State made a pair of key stops to secure the win.

Cunane led all scorers with 22 points. Kayla Jones and Kayda Boyd had 12 and 11 points apiece.

Jones surpassed 1,000 career points with her effort, becoming the 36th player in program history to do so.

Elizabeth Kitley led Virginia Tech with 18 points and seven rebounds while Aisha Sheppard was the only other Hokie in double-digits with 16 points.

NC State heads into the ACC Tournament as the No. 1 seed, opening the tournament on Friday after a double bye. They will face either No. 8-seed Boston College or No. 9-seed Florida State in the quarterfinals.

The 20th-ranked Notre Dame Fighting Irish knocked off No. 3 NC State 69-66 on Tuesday. It’s the first top-five win of Niele Ivey’s head coaching career.

It’s also Notre Dame’s first win at home against a top-five team since Arike Ogunbowale led the Irish past Louisville in a No. 1 vs. No. 2 matchup during the 2018-19 season.

Ivey, who played college basketball for the Irish from 1997-2001, was named head coach of the team in 2020 after the retirement of Muffet McGraw.

“Oh my gosh, (it’s) euphoria for me,” Ivey said of the win. “That was an amazing win to be able to beat NC State, one of the best teams in the country. I’m just so proud of this group. It was a huge challenge.”

Notre Dame was up by as much as 12 with 7:35 remaining in the game. But the Wolfpack fought back, pulling to within two with 1:42 to go.

NC State, who is the third-ranked 3-point shooting team in the country at 39.9 percent, managed just 25 percent from beyond the arc on Tuesday. Notre Dame also managed to out rebound the Wolfpack 45-38, recording 18 second-chance points. The Irish matched a season low with eight turnovers against a team that is causing 15.6 per game.

Maya Dodson led the Irish with 20 points and 10 rebounds. She was joined by Olivia Miles who had 13 points and six rebounds.

Diamond Johnson had 16 points for the Wolfpack, while Elissa Cunane added 13 points and seven rebounds.

NC State will look to rebound against Florida State on Thursday, while the Irish are back in action against Virginia Tech.