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UConn, and that's Final

Philadelphia - The belles who show no signs of cracking made their 12th Final Four on Tuesday night in the city famous for a cracked bell … and a history of providing a triumphant environment for UConn women's basketball.

Twenty years after making the program's first Final Four in Philly and 11 years after UConn won a national championship here, the Huskies earned their way to the national semifinals Tuesday with a 75-40 victory over Duke at Liacouras Center. UConn will play Notre Dame at the Final Four on Sunday night at 9 in Indianapolis.

Maya Moore, the tournament's Most Outstanding Player, scored a game-high 28 points to lead the Huskies. Moore's final basket, with 3:44 remaining, gave her exactly 3,000 points in her career - the only player in the history of the program to reach that mark.

"In 1991 we came here to a regional and it was the first time our program made the Final Four," UConn coach Geno Auriemma said. "Here we are 20 years later."

Auriemma said repeatedly over the weekend that his team was "vulnerable." The Huskies were closer to "unbeatable" Tuesday.

"Connecticut hasn't lost an NCAA Tournament game in three years," Duke coach Joanne P. McCallie said. "That's a lot of tradition."

m.dimauro@theday.com

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