UConn defeats FSU in overtime to finish third
PARADISE ISLAND, The Bahamas — After their crushing defeat to the University of Central Florida (UCF) Knights during the semi-final rounds of ‘Battle 4 Atlantis’, the No. 4 UConn Huskies came back to defeat the No. 20 Florida State Seminoles (FSU) in overtime with a final score of 78-76, proving why they earned the title of national champions last year.
Freshman Ryan Boatright, the UConn player who was suspended by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) after receiving improper benefits, joined the court for the first time, forcing Florida State into overtime with three consecutive foul shots. In an aggressive five minutes of play, fan favorites Shabazz Napier and Jeremy Lamb led the team to a third place finish after a head-on confrontation with Florida State’s infamous “chopper” defense. Napier finished with 26 points, the last of which came on his long-distance shot with just more than a minute to play in overtime. That gave UConn a 78-76 edge, and the Huskies held on after Florida State missed the rest of their shots – including two free throws. The Florida State Seminoles finished the tournament in fourth place after defeating UMass in Game Two, 73-53.
“I was most impressed with Florida State’s offense since I already knew they had a good defense,” said UConn Head Coach Jim Calhoun. “Both teams actually scored on each other and battled on the boards. Both teams were playing like it was a Big East game or mid-season game. It was played at an incredibly high level. Bottom line, it was a terrific win for us.”
The UCF Knights ended the Huskies winning streak at 16 games during a nail-biting upset in the second of three straight games during the semi-final round of the ‘Battle 4 Atlantis’ at Atlantis, Paradise Island, The Bahamas.