April 7 (UPI) -- Chloe Jackson made a layup in the closing seconds to lead the Baylor Lady Bears over Notre Dame 82-81 in the national championship game Sunday at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Fla.
With the game tied at 80-80, Jackson drove right and accelerated around two Fighting Irish defenders. She drained the go-ahead layup with 3.9 seconds left to clinch Baylor's third national championship victory in program history. It was the team's first title in seven years.
Notre Dame's Arike Ogunbowale was fouled with 1.9 seconds remaining after driving for a layup. She missed the first of two game-tying free throws, and the Fighting Irish never got the ball back.
Baylor recovered after blowing a 17-point lead and losing star forward Lauren Cox, who suffered a serious knee injury late in the third quarter. She was escorted off the court in a wheelchair after the injury.
"I'm one of the leaders of this team, so just to have my voice there to tell them I'm still okay, and they told me they were going to do this for me," Cox said. "I was just trying to get our crowd as loud as they could. They really showed out tonight and they were great."
Jackson led the Lady Bears with a team-high 26 points on 13-of-25 shooting. Kalani Brown had a double-double with 20 points (10-of-16 shooting) and 13 rebounds.
NaLyssa Smith had 14 points (7-of-9 shooting) and six rebounds. Cox had eight points and eight boards before her injury.
Ogunbowale had a game-high 31 points with six boards for the Fighting Irish. Marina Mabrey scored 21 points. Brianna Turner (12 points, 12 rebounds) and Jessica Shepard (11 points, 10 rebounds) posted double-doubles.
"I'm sad for the seniors that came that close after being down 17 and clawing our way back," Notre Dame coach Muffet McGraw said. "I thought Jackson was the key to the game and we really couldn't guard her."
Baylor women's head coach Kim Mulkey and the Lady Bears previously won titles in 2005 and 2012. The 2012 championship game matched Baylor against McGraw's Notre Dame squad.
Jackson was named the Final Four's Most Outstanding Player. She had six points, seven rebounds and six assists in Baylor's win over No. 2 seed Oregon on Friday to reach the title game.