LSU women's basketball vs. Iowa: Score prediction, scouting report for NCAA championship game

DALLAS – The improbable run for LSU women's basketball, which welcomed nine new players to its program in Kim Mulkey's second season, has led the grandest stage in the sport.

Led by senior point guard Alexis Morris and sophomore star Angel Reese's clutch performances in the Final Four win over Virginia Tech on Friday night, the Tigers (33-2) have advanced to their first NCAA championship game.

LSU will face National Player of the Year Caitlin Clark and Iowa (31-6) inside American Airlines Center on Sunday afternoon (2:30 p.m., ABC).

Here are three things to watch for in the game and a final score prediction.

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Can LSU women's basketball slow down Caitlin Clark?

Top-seeded South Carolina was undefeated and sporting women's basketball's best defense as it entered its Final Four matchup with the Hawkeyes on Friday. Yet the Gamecocks couldn't stop Iowa's Caitlin Clark.

Clark scored 41 points in the most anticipated game of the season, leading her team to snap the Gamecocks' 42-game win streak to reach to national title game.

Morris guarded Virginia Tech's Georgia Amoore in the semifinals, another great shooter, and she held the Hokies' guard to 17 points, her lowest total of the NCAA Tournament.

But it'll take a group effort for LSU to slow down arguably the D-I's best shooter. Will Mulkey have her team switch screens? Face guard her from the moment the game starts?

Kim Mulkey is undefeated in national championship games. This will be Lisa Bluder's first title game appearance. Edge Mulkey?

Mulkey guided her former team, Baylor, to three national championship games. The Bears walked out champions all three times, including an undefeated 40-0 season.

Iowa coach Lisa Bluder, before this tournament, had only been as far as the Elite Eight. She has the best player on her team, but how will the Hawkeyes handle the brightest lights Sunday afternoon?

Because of Mulkey, LSU has the edge in knowing the ins and outs of what a national title game entails and what it takes. How much will experience matter?

LSU's Angel Reese reacts during the second half of an NCAA Women's Final Four semifinals basketball game against Virginia Tech Friday, March 31, 2023, in Dallas. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)
LSU's Angel Reese reacts during the second half of an NCAA Women's Final Four semifinals basketball game against Virginia Tech Friday, March 31, 2023, in Dallas. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

Angel Reese positioned to punctuate a tremendous season on the national championship game stage

Just behind Clark all season, LSU's Reese has lurked in the scoring stat. And the 6-foot-4 forward has been second in the country in rebounding all year as well.

She scored 24 points against Virginia Tech and helped limit All-American Elizabeth Kitley to 18 points, including key stops in the second half.

Reese has had a memorable run through the NCAA Tournament for LSU, averaging 22 points and 16 rebounds in the five games. She's faced tougher matchups this postseason than what Iowa will present with 6-3 Monika Czinano and 6-1 McKenna Warnock.

Score prediction

Iowa 68, LSU 66: This year's national championship game comes down to the wire. Mulkey pulls together a scheme that keeps Clark in check for most of the game, but she heats up at the end to lift Iowa to the title.

Cory Diaz covers the LSU Tigers and Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns for The Daily Advertiser as part of the USA TODAY Network. Follow his Tigers and Cajuns coverage on Twitter: @ByCoryDiaz. Got questions regarding LSU/UL athletics? Send them to Cory Diaz at

This article originally appeared on Lafayette Daily Advertiser: LSU women's basketball vs. Iowa, Caitlin Clark: Score prediction