By Donte Medder |Staff Writer|
In the first appearance between two undefeated women’s basketball teams in the National championship, the University of Connecticut claimed its ninth title under Geno Auriemma.
This capped the sweep with the Connecticut men’s team against Kentucky and give UCONN a full sweep. The UCONN women were led by Sophomore Associated Press player of the year Breanna Stewart with 21 points, nine rebounds, and four assists. Senior Stefanie Dolson added 17 points, 16 rebounds, and seven assists. Coach Auriemma stated, “I knew if we played great we’d have a chance to win,” and the Huskies did not disappoint. They outscored Notre Dame 32 to 10 in points in the paint in the first half alone.
Stefanie Dolson was on pace for the first triple double in a national title game history with 10 points, six rebounds, and five assists going into the break. Notre Dame led a spirited comeback in the first half, cutting the deficit to five with 22 seconds going into the break. However, UCONN used a 10-2 run to open the first five minutes of the second half.
They remained untested after the run and cruised for the rest of the game. Notre Dame was shorthanded after the huge loss of their interior post presence senior center Natalie Achonwa, who tore her ACL in Notre Dame’s Elite eighth win over Baylor. This was the thrid loss in four national title tries for Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish were led by senior guard Kayla McBride, who poured in 21 points and added 5 rebounds. Senior Kayla McBride said after the game, “They got into a rhythm and it just went downhill from there.” Although the game did not live up to its billing, the atmosphere was electric as Auriemma collected his ninth title passing Pat Summits eight national championships.
Legendary coach Pat Summit congratulated the Huskies and their coach releasing the statement, “Congratulations to the UCONN Huskies for winning the 2014 NCAA National Championship” she continued, “My compliments also to coach Geno Auriemma for winning his ninth national title. He has accomplished this feat in record time.” The jabs thrown climaxed with Coach Auriemma saying, “We’re supposed to play each other, try to beat each other’s brains in, try to win a national championship and compete like hell, and then we’re supposed to get together afterwards and go have a bottle of wine? That sh** is just not going to happen.”
The latest victory of the UCONN women only adds to its legacy of dominance after posting its 5th undefeated.