Let the dog fight begin. Butler Bulldogs took on the University of Connecticut Huskies in what is now now as the ugliest championship game in NCAA history! The first half of the game was low. The total shot percentage for both Butler Bulldogs and the UConn Huskies was 26% just in the first half.
Butler took the lead 22-19 at the buzzer going into half time. The Butler Bulldogs had a 7-0 run in the second half but had missed 11 straight shots, that lasted a total of 7 minutes. UConn on the other hand, shot 33% of their field goals in the second half.
“I was playing timid. Calhoun said, ‘Pick it up, pick it up, pick it up.’ We had 20 minutes to do what we knew we could do. People encouraged me, and I came out aggressive.” Lamb said.
Jermey Lamb, who went scoreless in the first half, scored all 12 points, had 7 rebounds, and a block that helped UConn stretch their lead over the Bulldogs. They had a total of 43- rebounds and made 7 out of 8 free throws they had. A foul against the Bulldogs sent UConn to the free throw line for a 51-41 lead with 1:31 left in the game.
With 30 seconds left in the game, UConn went to the free throw line again and makes both free throws for a 53-41 lead and a UConn win. Jim Calhoun, coach of the UConn Huskies, became the oldest coach in history to win the NCAA Championship at the age of 68.
"I needed this team. Coaches rarely say that, but I needed this team. The gift of trust, the gift of faith they had in me – and their inability to give in … that’s why I got into coaching 40-some years ago when I became a high school teacher and coach. I couldn’t ask for a better gift. It reaffirms everything I’ve done in my profession. The sweetness of it? It’s very sweet.” Coach Calhoun said.