IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Caitlin Clark walked off the Carver-Hawkeye Arena court a winner for the last time Monday. But to do it, she and the Iowa Hawkeyes had to survive a nerve-wracking defensive battle and win the type of game they usually struggle with.

The highest-scoring team this season in Division I women's basketball (92.8 PPG coming into Monday's second-round game) had to fend off a West Virginia team that made Iowa work for every point it got.
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The Hawkeyes only scored one basket in the fourth quarter. But they're still moving on to the Sweet 16, and Clark and her fellow seniors said goodbye to a building they've filled all season long.


Iowa, the No. 1 seed in the Albany 2 Region, beat No. 8 seed West Virginia 64-54. Clark had 32 points, 8 rebounds and 3 assists in her final home game, and broke yet another record in her historic season. She now has 1,113 points, passing former Washington Huskies star Kelsey Plum for most points in a Division I season.

"This is one of the hardest rounds in the NCAA tournament," Clark said. Iowa's rival Big Ten team, Ohio State, experienced that in an upset loss to Duke on Sunday. "Everyone is really good. You're expected to win. You're on your home court. You have all the pressure in the world. They have absolutely nothing to lose to come in here and upset us."


The Mountaineers held the Hawkeyes to just 6 points in the second quarter and 26 for the first half, both Iowa season-lows for a quarter and for a half. Iowa had just 7 assists for the game, the program's lowest total in a victory since 2016. Iowa made only one field goal in the fourth quarter, but sank 14 free throws.

Indeed, the Hawkeyes didn't get rattled when the score was tied 52-52 with just over 2 minutes left. Junior guard Sydney Affolter got a 3-point play, which gave Iowa just enough breathing room to finish off the game.


Next up for Iowa is No. 5 seed Colorado, the same team the Hawkeyes faced last season in the Sweet 16. Iowa won that game 87-77 on its run to the Final Four.

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