Published January 24. 2014 4:00AM
No. 1 Arizona 69, Colorado 57
Nick Johnson scored 18 points, Brandon Ashley added 15 Arizona remained unbeaten with a win over Colorado on Thursday night.
Arizona (19-0, 6-0 Pac-12) had a week off after blowing out rival Arizona State and raced out to an early 14-point lead.
Aaron Gordon added 12 points for Arizona, which overcame a 3-for-15 night from 3-point range and some missed free throws down the stretch to extend the best start in school history.
A year after nearly pulling off an upset in the desert, Colorado (15-5, 4-3) had no chance for late-game heroics in its third game without injured leading scorer Spencer Dinwiddie.
The Buffaloes struggled to slow Arizona's bevy of scorers and couldn't overcome the big early hole, falling to 0-16 against No. 1 teams. Xavier Johnson led Colorado with 21 points and Josh Scott added 15.
No. 6 Florida 68, Alabama 62
Michael Frazier II scored 18 points and made five 3-pointers to lead Florida over Alabama.
It was the 10th consecutive win for the Gators (16-2, 5-0 Southeastern Conference), matching last season's longest streak.
The Crimson Tide (8-10, 2-3) had its league-best 14-game SEC home winning streak snapped.
Florida went 8 of 10 from the free throw line over the final 47 seconds to halt any Alabama threat.
Frazier shot 5 of 13, all from 3-point range. Casey Prather scored 14 points on 6-of-16 shooting for the Gators. Scottie Wilbekin had 10 points and four assists.
Trevor Releford led Alabama with 14 points and Nick Jacobs had 12. The Tide was without No. 2 scorer Retin Obasohan, who strained his left hip flexor in Tuesday's practice.
The Gators, who earned win No. 100 for the four-man senior class, have won the last eight meetings and 10 of 11. Alabama has lost three of its last four overall.
No. 15 Cincinnati 69, Central Florida 51
Justin Jackson matched his career high by blocking seven shots and Sean Kilpatrick scored 19 points with a strong second half that carried Cincinnati past Central Florida for its 11th straight win.
Cincinnati (19-2, 7-0 American Athletic) is off to its best start since 2001-02, when it was in Conference USA. The Bearcats' winning streak is their longest since they opened last season with 12 wins.
And it's been mostly a matter of defense. The Bearcats have held their last 27 opponents under 70 points, the longest active streak in Division I. They took control of this one by opening the second half with an 18-5 run.
Central Florida (9-8, 1-5) has lost four in a row. The Knights were only 5 of 16 from the free throw line, had 14 turnovers and shot 34 percent from the field.
No. 17 Ohio State 62, Illinois 55
LaQuinton Ross scored 18 points and Lenzelle Smith Jr. had 16 — including a critical 3-pointer in the waning moments — to help Ohio State end a four-game skid with a win over Illinois.
Aaron Craft added 11 points, six rebounds and five assists for the Buckeyes (16-4, 3-4 Big Ten), who had lost four in a row for the first time since 2007-08.
Joseph Bertrand had 19 points for the Illini (13-7, 2-5), who lost their fifth straight. They haven't won since Jan. 4 and play three of their next four games against ranked opponents.
Rayvonte Rice, averaging 17.4 points a game, was 0 for 8 from the field and went scoreless. The Illini have lost their last six Big Ten road games and fell to 1-4 against ranked teams this season.
No. 23 Memphis 82, Houston 59
Shaq Goodwin had 20 points, Joe Jackson added 18 points and seven assists, and Memphis jumped out to a big lead early against Houston.
The Tigers (14-4, 4-2 American Athletic Conference) never trailed and led by 17 in the first half of their fourth win in five games.
Meanwhile, the Cougars (11-8, 3-3) have lost three of four.
TaShawn Thomas led Houston with 14 points and Brandon Morris added 13.
L.J. Rose had 10 assists for the Cougars, who shot 42.6 percent and committed 18 turnovers.
Memphis had 15 turnovers but overcame them with 59 percent shooting. The Tigers held a 48-36 advantage in the paint and outrebounded Houston 33-28.
Memphis lost its previous two conference home games to Cincinnati and Connecticut.
No. 3 Duke 85, No. 24 Florida State 77
Tricia Liston scored 25 points and Elizabeth Williams had 20 as Duke needed overtime to beat Florida State.
The Blue Devils used an 11-0 run to rally from a four-point deficit in regulation and score the first seven points in overtime.
Liston finished with 25 points, including four 3-pointers, after scoring just four points in the first half. Williams added seven rebounds and six blocks.
The Seminoles (14-5, 2-4) wasted a career night from Natasha Howard - 28 points and 21 rebounds with five blocks. Morgan Jones scored 15 points and grabbed 10 rebounds and Brittany Brown added 12 points in the loss points.
Alexis Jones tied a Duke (19-1, 6-0) record with 15 assists in the school's first overtime game since 2009.
No. 2 Notre Dame 79, Miami 52
Natalie Achonwa had 23 points and nine rebounds, Lindsay Allen added a season-high 16 points and Notre Dame shook off a slow start to beat Miami for its 21st straight home victory.
The Fighting Irish started 1 for 13 shooting, consistently missing inside, but finally got going after trailing by six. The Irish made 10 of their final 19 shots of the first half to open a 35-26 lead the break, and then began the second half with a 10-0 run to take control.
The Irish (18-0, 5-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) are off to their best start since going 23-0 en route to the national championship in 2000-01. The Irish had a 53-35 rebounding edge and outscored the Hurricanes (11-8, 3-3) 44 to 22 in the paint.
Jassany Williams and Adrienne Motley led Miami (11-8, 3-3) with 10 points apiece as the Hurricanes shot 31 percent.
Virginia 86, No. 6 Maryland 72
Kelsey Wolfe scored 24 points and Ataira Franklin and Faith Randolph each scored 19 and Virginia ended Maryland's 14-game winning streak.
The Cavaliers (10-9, 3-3 Atlantic Coast Conference) ended a five-game losing streak against the Terrapins, and won their second straight against a ranked foe. They beat No. 24 Florida State on Sunday.
Alyssa Thomas scored 27 points and 10 rebounds Alicia DeVaughn scored 14 for Maryland (16-2, 4-1). The Terps fell behind 45-38 when Virginia opened the second half on an 11-0 run and never got closer than four in the final 14 minutes.
Both teams shot 50 percent from the field, but Virginia had eight 3s, the Terps just four.
Lexi Gerson and Sarah Imovbioh each added 12 points for the Cavaliers.
No. 7 North Carolina 83, Wake Forest 65
Diamond DeShields and Allisha Gray had 19 points each and North Carolina pulled away down the stretch.
North Carolina (17-3, 5-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) won its 11th straight in the series. Xylina McDaniel and Stephanie Mavunga added 12 points each for UNC.
Dearica Hamby led the Demon Deacons (10-9, 1-5) with 22 points and Chelsea Douglas added 20.
UNC has won 12 of its last 13 games. The Deacons have lost five of their last six.
The game was close until the final four minutes, tied for the last time at 56-56 on Douglas' 3-pointer with 8:22 remaining. But the Tar Heels went on a 19-2 run before Millesa Calicott's 3-pointer for the Deacons with 1:05 to go.
Alabama 57, No. 9 Kentucky 55
Daisha Simmons scored 17 of her 22 points in the second half, including a layup with 2.3 seconds remaining that lifted Alabama over Kentucky.
Kentucky (15-4, 3-3 Southeastern Conference), tied the score at 55-all on two free throws by Jennifer O'Neill with 14.9 seconds to go. However, the Crimson Tide (9-10, 2-4) had plenty of time to set up for the last shot by Simmons.
A desperation attempt by former Norwich Free Academy star Kastine Evans bounced off the back of the rim as time expired, giving Alabama its first win in Lexington since 2002.
Brianna Hutchen added 10 points for the Tide.
No. 11 Tennessee 89, Florida 69
Meighan Simmons scored 21 points as Tennessee capitalized on its 3-point accuracy to win on a night dedicated to honoring former Lady Vols coach Pat Summitt.
Bashaara Graves added 17 points and eight rebounds for Tennessee (15-4, 4-2 SEC), which shot 10 of 21 from 3-point range and handed Florida (13-6, 3-3) its third consecutive loss.
Andraya Carter scored 14 points, Jasmine Jones had 13 points and Isabelle Harrison added 12 for Tennessee. Kayla Lewis led Florida with 14 points.
Tennessee guard Ariel Massengale didn't return to the game after getting hit in the face and falling to the floor while making a steal late in the first half.
Before the game, the Pat Summitt Foundation received three checks totaling $30,000 in honor of the SEC's "We Back Pat" Week, an initiative focused on recognizing the foundation's fight against Alzheimer's disease.
No. 15 LSU 71, Auburn 60
Theresa Plaisance had 19 points and 11 rebounds on Thursday night to lead LSU to victory.
LSU led 62-56 with 3:46 to play and used a 9-0 run to build a 15-point advantage before Auburn scored two meaningless baskets in the final 40 seconds.
After battling back-and-forth for much of the first half, LSU (15-4, 4-2 SEC) trailed 36-35 at halftime. Raigyne Moncrief's layup 30 seconds into the second sparked a six-point LSU run for a 41-36 lead.
Auburn (11-8, 2-4) battled back to a 41-41 tie, but LSU went on a 17-3 run to take a 58-44 lead with 7:24 left in the game.
Moncrief had 15, Jeanne Kenney scored 12 and Shanece McKinney added 11 for LSU.
Brandy Montgomery led Auburn with 22 points and Katie Frerking added 11.
No. 17 Texas A&M 62, Missouri 57
Courtney Walker scored 21 points as Texas A&M won its ninth straight game and remained undefeated in conference play.
After trailing for much of the first half and 33-31 at halftime, Texas A&M (16-4, 6-0 SEC)took the lead early in the second and never relinquished it.
The Tigers (13-6, 2-4) hung around though and cut their deficit to 60-56 with 1:15 to play. Missouri then got the ball back after a missed 3-pointer by Texas A&M but the Tigers missed 3s on their next two possessions and the Aggies prevailed.
Courtney Williams added 14 points and went 6 of 11 from the field for Texas A&M.
Morgan Eye led Missouri with 19 points while Brianna Kulas added 14 points and 11 rebounds for the Tigers, who have lost four of their last five.
No. 22 Purdue 90, Northwestern 65
Liza Clemons scored 23 points and grabbed 10 rebounds as Purdue handled Northwestern.
Purdue (14-5, 4-3 Big Ten) closed the first half on a 13-4 run to take a 45-34 lead into halftime. The Boilermakers continued to pull away after the break, opening the half on an 11-3 run, and Northwestern (12-7, 2-4) was unable to cut the deficit to single digits during the second half.
Whitney Bays scored 14 points on 7-of-11 shooting for the Boilermakers, and April Wilson added 11 points. KK Houser had nine points and nine rebounds.
Nia Coffey had 20 points to lead the Wildcats. Lauren Douglas scored 14 points while Christen Inman and Maggie Lyon had 10 apiece. Ashley Deary added 10 assists.
No. 23 North Carolina State 85, Boston College 76
Markeisha Gatling scored 27 points and Kody Burke added 24 with 11 rebounds for North Carolina State.
NC State (17-3, 4-2 ACC) shot 48.1 percent from the field. Len'Nique Brown had 15 points, seven rebounds and four assists, and Krystal Barrett dished out eight assists.
The Eagles (11-9, 2-4) were 23-of-60 from the field (38.3 percent) and hit 13 3-pointers, but also committed 28 fouls and 12 turnovers. Kelly Hughes led Boston College with 23 points and Katie Zenevitch chipped in 19.