Four for Four in Indy....End of an Era - 2016

April 5, 2016 (Indianapolis) - Breanna Stewart attended Cicero North High School just outside of Syracuse. UConn likes to try and schedule a homecoming game for their Seniors. The Orange Nation would have drawn a huge crowd at Carrier Dome to see her return. They declined and instead hosted Coppin State and drew 335 people....While the Huskies sold out the tiny gym at Colgate in nearby Hamilton, NY the same night....Oh well...

No one, I mean no one could have predicted the Huskies would be playing Syracuse in the National Championship Game later that season. The Orange surprised Regional Top Seed South Carolina, then Tennessee to get to Indy, where they then beat Washington in the Semi's....

Yes the Huskies rolled thru the season, very little competition that included the big three, Kia Nurse, Gabby Williams and two very talented freshmen in Naphessa Collier and Katie Lou Samuelson off the bench. Scary good. Lou however broke a bone in her left foot on the first play of their Final Four win over Oregon State and played thru it until halftime. Enter Williams...

Quentin Hillsman knew his team had a tall task and right from the start, the Huskies were on top of their game. A 9-0 start with Jefferson and Stewart knocking in three balls..Followed by an 11-0 run led by the senior trio that built the lead to 23-6 and of course Jefferson capped the first with a buzzer beating 3 ball. 28-13 after one...The second not much better for the Orange as Kia Nurse would chip in with an opening 10-2 spurt, chipping in with four. And of course the Huskies capped off the half getting to 50, capped by a Stewart jumper with five seconds left in a dominating first half. 52% shooting and the three seniors, led by Stewart's 14, combined for 38 of the 50...Nurse adding nine in a dominating opening 20 minutes.

UConn started the third with a 10-4 run, Gabby Williams starting with a pair of hoops and the Huskies led by 33 and in total control...Or were they ? The Orange starting getting stops and making shots...and the building got loud, particularly the Orange crowd...Syracuse went on a 16-0 run to cut the UConn lead in half..The longest run by any team playing the Huskies all season. Naphessa Collier scoring twice, including a buzzer beater and the lead back to 21.

That Final 10 Minutes pretty much a formality. Stewart a three at 71-47 and a conventional three point play at 78-51 and the job was finished as the Huskies cruised to an 82-51 win capped by Senior Walk on Briana Pulido's baseline jumper that sent the UConn bench into a frenzy. Stewart's last game a 24p-10r double double with 6 assists, Tuck 19p-7r-5a and Jefferson 13p-5a in a dominating win. And Williams showing what the next two years would be like with 9p-9r in her fifth start of the season.

The last three seasons of the Stewart, Tuck, Jefferson career at UConn 116-1, 151-5 overall with four National Championships. Stewie came expecting to win four natty's, needless to say with some help...Mission Accomplished !!

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