The Hall of Fame coach loses just one starter, senior point guard Saniya Chong, from a team that won its first 36 games and helped establish an NCAA record 111-game winning streak before being upset by Mississippi State, 66-64, on Friday night in the national semifinals.
Morgan Williams - yes, with an extraneous letter on her last name - became a trending topic on Twitter after her shot that took down the four-time defending national champion Huskies late Friday night in Dallas - after midnight on the East Coast.
Guard Morgan William hit a 10-foot jump shot at the buzzer in overtime to lift the Bulldogs to the stunning victory in Dallas, Texas.
"I'm a little disappointed, but I think it kind of had to happen at some point", said Jennifer Casparino, a freshman from Newington.
With just under a minute to go in overtime, UConn was looking to tie the game when they turned the ball over. "So I just say going into this game, I have to take care of the ball, don't force too many things, look inside, and make the right decisions". "I'm still in shock". However, on the pass down low, Katie Lou Samuelson went down hard when it appeared she took a shot to the face or head by Mississippi State's Dominique Dillingham.
Moments before Williams' epic shot, a replay review awarded UConn two free throws for a flagrant 1 foul call that tied the game with 26.6 seconds left.
UConn's 111-game winning streak started that day after an overtime loss to Stanford. We have one heck of team to get ready for, a tremendous staff.
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The Bulldogs (34-4) will play SC (32-4), which beat Stanford, for the national championship on Sunday night.
It signified the number of points it lost to UConn in the Sweet 16, a team that would go on to win its fourth consecutive title. Done. This team was mortal all season but showed it for the first time Friday night in the evening's second semifinal. The Bulldogs don't have time to celebrate their win because they now advance to the championship game against SC. CT head coach Geno Auriemma reacts to his teams poor start against Mississippi State in the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in the semifinals of the women's Final Four in Dallas on Friday. "That is one heck of a basketball team, the greatest of all-time".
"My teammates are just so happy and proud of me". She rocked the court with 41 points and 7 assists and the game ended in a 94-85 overtime win for the Bulldogs.
It was the biggest deficit UConn had faced during its historic streak and one of the largest during the last 22 years, which the Huskies have dominated with 11 national championships.
Vivians had 19 points, William had 13, Richardson had 12 and McCowan finished with 10 for the Bulldogs (34-4).
"We had an incredible run, but we came up against a much better team tonight", Auriemma said. UConn made its first four shots of the third quarter including back-to-back 3-pointers by Samuelson and Kia Nurse.
William is listed at 5-foot-5 on Mississippi State's roster. She was cheering on the Bulldogs, who hail from her home state.
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