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Friday, December 31, 2010
Updated: January 25, 10:26 AM ET
A night of bizarre bowl finishes


The Streak is over! The North Carolina Tar Heels snapped a three-game bowl losing streak, winning for the first time since 2001! Oh. Not that streak? Is there something else that happened last night?

Women's College Basketball: Oh *that* streak is over. The Connecticut women's record-setting 90 game winning streak came to an end last night, as No. 8 Stanford led the entire way, and went on to prevail, 71-59, at the Cardinal's Maples Pavilion. Led by Jeanette Pohlen's career-high 31 points, Stanford extended its home winning streak to 52 consecutive games, and held UConn star Maya Moore to just 14 points. Stanford played a fantastic game and I watched with mixed emotions as one of the greatest athletic achievements I've witnessed as a sports fan came to an end. For more on the game, read Mechelle Voepel's column.

Thursday's bowl games were off-the-reservation crazy. What a day of college football.

• We started with the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl. Army (7-6) held on for a 16-14 win over Southern Methodist (7-7). It was a good warm-up for the rest of the day's craziness. For more, check out the recap.

• Pinstripe Bowl Steals the Show: Syracuse 36, Kansas State 34. The Orange (8-5) and Wildcats (7-6) may not have been the best game of the bowl season, but it was the most entertaining to watch so far. I'm a Yankee fan so I was looking forward to the first postseason football game at the new Stadium. I wasn't there in person (there's always next year, right?), so I enjoyed it from the warmth and comfort of my couch. Running back Delon Carter and wide receiver Marcus Sales had huge games for the Orange. Of course, what everyone is talking about is the controversial excessive celebration penalty called on Kansas State wide receiver Adrian Hilburn when he saluted the crowd after scoring a touchdown with 1:13 left to go in the game. I didn't have a rooting interest, but I was upset that a game so entertaining could be impacted by such a call when other more flagrant demonstrations of unsportsmanlike conduct go unflagged in other games. For more on the Pinstripe Bowl, here's the recap.

• Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl. This was another crazy one. I didn't watch much of the second half because I was focused on the UConn-Stanford basketball game, but I did switch over just in time to see a totally crazy clock management gaffe by UNC. It looked like the game had ended with a Volunteer win. But a flag and a controversial decision to put time back on the clock allowed the Tarheels to kick a field goal to force overtime. UNC (8-5) eventually won it 30-27 in double overtime. The Volunteers finish at 6-7. For more, check out the recap.

• Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl. In the biggest surprise of the day, Washington beat No. 18 Nebraska, 19-7. The Cornhuskers (10-4), who had defeated the Huskies (7-6) in Seattle 56-21 on September 18, managed just 189 total yards of offense. For more, check out the full recap.

Men's College Basketball: No. 8 Villanova extended its home winning streak at the Pavilion to 43 games with a 78-74 win over Big Five rival Temple. Look out for both of these teams in March.

NBA: The Orlando Magic won their fifth straight game, defeating the Knicks, 112-103. The San Antonio Spurs won the western conference showdown with the Dirk-less Dallas Mavericks, 99-93, maintaining the league's best record.