Caitlin Clark loses the university championship after losing to the unbeatable South Carolina | Basketball | Sports

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Basketball is a team sport and the best women’s college basketball team this year was South Carolina. Caitlin Clark, the player who has revolutionized the competition and has broken all individual records, has been left without the coveted collective award. For the second year in a row, the University of Iowa is defeated in the finals. In 2023 they lost to Angel Reese’s Louisiana (LSU), against whom this year they took revenge in the quarterfinals. This Sunday they were defeated by Kamilla Cardoso’s unbeatable South Carolina (87-75), which put the cherry on top of a perfect season in which all 38 games were counted as victories.

The depth of South Carolina’s bench and the combination of its stars have been more powerful than an Iowa that was excessively dependent on Clark, which was also subject to reinforced marking. The Iowa star finished with 30 points, 8 rebounds and 5 assists, the best on his team in the three areas, although with low success percentages for what he is used to (he hit 5 of 13 in triples and 10 of 28 in total field goals).

For South Carolina, Brazilian center Kamilla Cardoso took over the boards, with 15 points, 17 rebounds and 3 blocks. Tessa Johnson had the best day of her career with 19 points and, along with Te-Hina Paopao, she matched the Iowa star in shooting from the three-point line. Between Johnson and Paopao they have made 6 triples out of 10 attempts.

Perhaps what best explains the difference between both teams are the statistics of the players who started the game as substitutes. On the part of South Carolina they have scored 37 points, while in the case of Iowa they have not achieved any.

The Iowa team has sold its defeat dearly. He has not given up despite being down 14 points with 7.44 minutes remaining. It has come within 5 points (80-75), but South Carolina has imposed its physical strength. Iowa’s last desperate three-pointers didn’t go in this time.

For Caitlin Clark it was her last college basketball game. She will enter the pool of eligible players to join the professional league (the WNBA) next season, where she will probably be selected as number 1 in the draft.

He leaves behind a brilliant university career in which he has broken historical scoring records. He reached that of the NCAA (the current university sports system) on February 15 in a game against Michigan in which he added 49 points, 13 rebounds and 5 assists. On February 28, she surpassed Lynette Woodard’s legendary 3,649 points, the absolute record for women’s college basketball, which dated back to 1981, just before the NCAA was established. And on March 3 he broke Pete Maravich’s scoring mark of 3,667 points, Pete Gun, who has held the men’s record for 54 years (although in his case he achieved it in three seasons and when there were no triples).

Thanks to it, Iowa has won three Big Ten championships, its university division. However, she has not been able to reach the national title. South Carolina, on the other hand, is crowned for the second time in three years. He won the tournament in 2022, lost to Iowa last year, and now he is lifting the trophy again.

Caitlin Clark, Kamilla Cardoso and Angel Reese are part of a golden generation for American women’s basketball. They will meet again as rivals in the WNBA and who knows if as teammates on the national team.

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