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NCAA Tournament final: Kentucky vs. U-Conn.

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April 7, 2014

Live coverage and analysis of the 2014 NCAA Tournament championship game.

  • Alex Prewitt
  • ·
ARLINGTON, TX - APRIL 07:  Shabazz Napier #13 of the Connecticut Huskies celebrates on the court after defeating the Kentucky Wildcats 60-54 in the NCAA Men's Final Four Championship at AT&T Stadium on April 7, 2014 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

(Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

In the least surprising news of Monday night, Connecticut guard Shabazz Napier was named the Final Four Most Outstanding player after leading the Huskies to the national title.

Napier finished with 22 points on 8 of 16 shooting, including four threes, against Kentucky. He also added six rebounds, three assists and three steals.

The full all-Final Four team is below:

Julius Randle, Kentucky.

James Young, Kentucky.

Ryan Boatright, Connecticut

DeAndre Daniels, Connecticut

Shabazz Napier, Connecticut (MoP)

  • Cindy Boren
  • ·
(Jamie Squire / Getty Images)

(Jamie Squire / Getty Images)

Shabazz Napier, the game’s Most Outstanding Player, went a little off-script with an honest answer aimed at the NCAA immediately after Connecticut won the national championship.

“Let me get your attention,” he yelled to the crowd during the interview with CBS. “You’re looking at the hungry Huskies. This is what happens when you ban us!”

He was, of course, referring to the two-year postseason ban placed on the school in 2012.

  • Cindy Boren
  • ·

The celebration in Connecticut begins as fans run onto the Storrs streets.

  • Cindy Boren
  • ·
(Charlie Niebergall / AP)

(Charlie Niebergall / AP)

At the home campus…

UConn fans celebrate in Storrs. (Jessica Hill / AP)

UConn fans celebrate in Storrs. (Jessica Hill / AP)

  • Cindy Boren
  • ·

Drake’s recent Kentucky fandom is the subject of some ridicule after UConn wins.

  • Alex Prewitt
  • ·

Connecticut, in the first season under Coach Kevin Ollie, in the first year after sanctions banned the team from the NCAA tournament, has won the national championship. Behind 22 points from Shabazz Napier, 14 points from Ryan Boatright and 10 points from Niels Giffey, the Wildcats topped freshmen-laden Kentucky, 60-54.

There was no need for the Aaron Harrison magic. Kentucky’s last-ditch effort fizzled, leaving Connecticut to dribble out the clock and begin the celebration.

For the Wildcats, James Young finished with 20 points and seven rebounds. Julius Randle scored 10. No other player had more than eight.

This marks Connecticut’s fourth national title in the past 15 seasons. Tomorrow, its women’s team goes for the double dip, which also happened in 2004.

“I told you,” Napier said.

(GIF via BuzzFeed Sports)

  • Cindy Boren
  • ·

UConn leads by four with just under a minute left and this might be itching badly.

  • Alex Prewitt
  • ·

The Huskies just had to jack up an off-balance shot late in the shot clock but luckily got the rebound, so Coach Kevin Ollie called a timeout to settle things. They still lead 58-52 with 1:49 left and have been tremendous from the free-throw line in late-game situations during the NCAA tournament.

  • Alex Prewitt
  • ·

Kentucky has made 13 of 24 free throws (54.2 percent). Kentucky is behind 56-52.

  • Alex Prewitt
  • ·

Connecticut has led wire to wire, and yet Kentucky continues to hang around, unable to get over the hump until, everyone assumes, it becomes Aaron Harrison time. If you recall, Harrison hit the game-winner against Wisconsin in the Final Four. And Michigan in the Elite Eight. And Louisville in the Sweet 16.

Here’s the WaPo’s Liz Clarke on his heroics:

There are numerous ways to distinguish one basketball player’s skills from another’s — height, heft, quickness and game smarts among them. But some, like Aaron Harrison, appear blessed with a passion, if not an all-consuming compulsion, for taking the shots with the absolute highest stakes.

Michael Jordan had it, to be sure, and in the last three rounds of the NCAA tournament, 19-year-old Aaron Harrison served notice he has it, too — that mysterious facet of his competitive DNA that Wisconsin’s Sam Dekker characterized as “that clutch gene.”

“The biggest thing is he’s not afraid to miss,” Kentucky Coach John Calipari said Sunday when asked about Aaron Harrison’s game-winners against Louisville, Michigan and now Wisconsin. “If you’re going to make those kind of shots, you absolutely cannot be afraid to miss them.”

Aaron Harrison currently only has seven points and has hit 1 of 4 three-pointers. But the game will still probably come down to him. Unless it comes down to Shabazz Napier. He’s hit a few buzzer-beaters in his lifetime too.

  • Alex Prewitt
  • ·

The reported attendance at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas tonight is 79,238, a new national title game record.

  • Alex Prewitt
  • ·

A quick foul trouble update for both sides:

Connecticut: Amida Brimah (four), Phillip Nolan (four), DeAndre Daniels (three).

Kentucky: Alex Poythress (three).

  • Alex Prewitt
  • ·

  • Alex Prewitt
  • ·

Cutting to a pass from teammate Shabazz Napier, Connecticut guard and defensive standout Ryan Boatright rolled his left ankle, bending it inwards. He was forced to call timeout and limped towards the huddle, with the Huskies ahead 48-45. His loss, even for a short period, would be a big blow for Connecticut; Boatright has 12 points, three rebounds, three assists and three steals on Monday night.

  • Alex Prewitt
  • ·

Few words can describe what James Young did to Amida Brimah. In a quantifiable way, he sent the Connecticut center to the bench with his fourth foul. In a more intangible, hyperbolic way, Young destroyed him.

Just past the midway point in the second half, Connecticut leads 48-43.

(Matthew Emmons / USA Today)

(Matthew Emmons / USA Today)

(GIF via BuzzFeed Sports)

  • Alex Prewitt
  • ·

At intermission, Connecticut was ahead 35-31. Eight minutes into the second half, Connecticut is up 41-39. Neither team is shooting better than 40 percent for the game.

  • Cindy Boren
  • ·

There are rules for “One Shining Moment.” Do not think for a moment that CBS and the NCAA, which does not allow reporters in the media section to use cups that do not bear the sacred logo, would overlook the playing of The Song.

  • Alex Prewitt
  • ·

A sloppy pass here, a couple blocked shots there, and suddenly Kentucky is on the brink of overtaking the lead, heading into the first media timeout of the second half behind only 37-36. The Wildcats have forced several long perimeter attempts from the Huskies, who are 3 for 13 from beyond the arc.

  • Cindy Boren
  • ·
ARLINGTON, TX - APRIL 07: Shabazz Napier #13 of the Connecticut Huskies and Julius Randle #30 of the Kentucky Wildcats battle for a loose ball during the NCAA Men's Final Four Championship at AT&T Stadium on April 7, 2014 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

Shabazz Napier and Julius Randle (right) battle for a loose ball. (Jamie Squire / Getty Images)

LeBron James likes what he sees from UConn senior Shabazz Napier so far and he’s already thinking about the NBA draft.

  • Alex Prewitt
  • ·

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Robert Morris vs. North Florida
81-
Final
77
Final
recap
Box
1 2 Total
RMOR 29 52 81
NOFLA 35 42 77
Recent updates
0:00 End of the Game
0:00 End of the 2nd Half
0:01 Lucky Jones makes free throw 2 of 2.
0:01 Colonials with an offensive rebound.
0:01 Lucky Jones misses free throw 1 of 2.
Stat leaders
Robert Morris
Jones 21
Minnie 10
Stewart 6
North Florida
Beech 28
Nesbitt 9
Moore 5
Colonials
Ospreys
Player stats
Player Min FG Pts Reb Ast
R. Pryor 35 8-17 20 3 1
E. Minnie 27 3-7 12 10 1
M. Reed 31 9-17 19 1 2
A. Tate 29 0-3 0 6 0
K. Stewart 34 1-5 7 1 6
A. Freder... 11 1-2 2 1 0
L. Gomis 2 0-0 0 0 0
L. Jones 31 6-11 21 7 1
Player stats
Player Min FG Pts Reb Ast
C. Davenp... 31 1-3 4 6 3
R. Banks 4 1-1 3 2 0
D. Moore 37 4-15 13 8 5
J. Nesbitt 37 4-6 14 9 3
B. Beech 33 9-14 28 7 1
D. Wilson 4 1-1 2 0 0
D. Daniels 30 4-8 8 7 0
T. Mackey 24 1-4 5 2 3
Game Details
Arizona State vs. Connecticut
68-
Final
61
Final
recap
Box
1 2 Total
ARIST 37 31 68
UCONN 24 37 61
Recent updates
0:00 End of the Game
0:00 End of the 2nd Half
0:10 Substitution: Bo Barnes in for Savon Goodman.
0:10 Substitution: Jonathan Gilling in for Eric Jacobsen.
0:10 Sun Devils take a full timeout.
Stat leaders
Arizona State
McKissic 22
Goodman 9
Holder 4
Connecticut
Purvis 19
Hamilton 7
Samuel 6
Sun Devils
Huskies
Player stats
Player Min FG Pts Reb Ast
T. Holder 35 2-9 4 4 4
G. Blakes 36 4-8 10 5 1
S. McKiss... 37 8-14 22 5 1
S. Goodman 35 6-10 14 9 2
E. Jacobs... 39 5-6 12 1 0
C. Murray 6 0-1 0 2 0
J. Gilling 6 1-2 3 1 2
B. Barnes 6 1-2 3 2 0
Player stats
Player Min FG Pts Reb Ast
D. Hamilt... 34 7-14 16 7 3
T. Samuel 35 4-5 10 4 6
A. Brimah 19 0-3 0 0 0
P. Nolan 32 4-9 8 3 0
R. Purvis 39 8-18 19 4 3
R. Lubin 5 0-1 0 1 0
K. Facey 10 1-1 2 2 0
O. Calhoun 18 2-6 6 1 1
D. Guest 8 0-0 0 1 1
Game Details
Kent State vs. Middle Tennessee
68-
Final
56
Final
recap
Box
1 2 Total
KENTST 40 28 68
MIDDTN 29 27 56
Recent updates
0:00 End of the Game
0:00 End of the 2nd Half
0:33 Marcus Tarrance makes a 3-point jump shot from 22 feet out.
0:48 Derek Jackson misses a 3-point jump shot from 24 feet out.
1:21 Devareaux Manley misses a jump shot from 14 feet out.
Stat leaders
Kent State
Hall 20
Hall 8
Brewer 6
Middle Tennessee
2 tied 10
2 tied 8
Upshaw 3
Golden Flashes
Blue Raiders
Player stats
Player Min FG Pts Reb Ast
K. Spicer 21 1-3 3 7 0
C. Ortiz 21 0-1 0 2 0
J. Hall 29 9-14 20 8 1
D. Manley 31 2-8 7 3 0
D. Jackson 35 6-14 16 3 3
R. Davis 5 2-5 4 2 0
G. Akbar 20 1-2 4 3 0
C. Brown 10 1-2 2 1 1
K. Brewer 28 3-8 12 3 6
Player stats
Player Min FG Pts Reb Ast
G. Potts 16 1-3 3 0 1
P. Buford 25 4-7 10 6 0
R. Upshaw 27 2-8 5 8 3
J. Rozier 27 3-8 10 8 1
J. Raymond 32 2-5 6 1 1
E. Simpson 13 0-2 1 0 0
D. Jones 21 1-5 6 5 0
D. Harris 18 2-4 7 2 1
M. Tarran... 17 2-3 6 0 0
J. Philli... 4 0-2 2 2 0
Game Details
Kent State vs. Middle Tennessee
68-
Final
56
Final
recap
Box
1 2 Total
KENTST 40 28 68
MIDDTN 29 27 56
Recent updates
0:00 End of the Game
0:00 End of the 2nd Half
0:33 Marcus Tarrance makes a 3-point jump shot from 22 feet out.
0:48 Derek Jackson misses a 3-point jump shot from 24 feet out.
1:21 Devareaux Manley misses a jump shot from 14 feet out.
Stat leaders
Kent State
Hall 20
Hall 8
Brewer 6
Middle Tennessee
2 tied 10
2 tied 8
Upshaw 3
Golden Flashes
Blue Raiders
Player stats
Player Min FG Pts Reb Ast
K. Spicer 21 1-3 3 7 0
C. Ortiz 21 0-1 0 2 0
J. Hall 29 9-14 20 8 1
D. Manley 31 2-8 7 3 0
D. Jackson 35 6-14 16 3 3
R. Davis 5 2-5 4 2 0
G. Akbar 20 1-2 4 3 0
C. Brown 10 1-2 2 1 1
K. Brewer 28 3-8 12 3 6
Player stats
Player Min FG Pts Reb Ast
G. Potts 16 1-3 3 0 1
P. Buford 25 4-7 10 6 0
R. Upshaw 27 2-8 5 8 3
J. Rozier 27 3-8 10 8 1
J. Raymond 32 2-5 6 1 1
E. Simpson 13 0-2 1 0 0
D. Jones 21 1-5 6 5 0
D. Harris 18 2-4 7 2 1
M. Tarran... 17 2-3 6 0 0
J. Philli... 4 0-2 2 2 0
Game Details
Maryland Eastern Shore vs. High Point
70-
Final
64
Final
recap
Box
1 2 Total
MD-ES 32 32 64
HIGHPT 31 39 70
Recent updates
0:00 End of the Game
0:00 End of the 2nd Half
0:01 Haiishen McIntyre makes free throw 2 of 2.
0:01 Haiishen McIntyre makes free throw 1 of 2.
0:01 Personal foul committed by Ishaq Pitt.
Stat leaders
Maryland Eastern Shore
2 tied 13
Pitt 8
Pitt 3
High Point
Brown 23
Cugini 9
5 tied 2
Hawks
Panthers
Player stats
Player Min FG Pts Reb Ast
D. Martin 31 6-12 13 4 0
M. Myers 19 6-8 13 3 1
S. Randall 8 0-2 0 1 1
D. Walker 25 2-7 6 3 1
I. Pitt 29 3-8 10 8 3
D. Elliott 17 2-4 6 3 2
S. Spurlo... 3 0-0 0 0 0
R. Andino 15 1-5 3 1 2
M. Blackm... 12 1-3 3 2 0
I. Johnson 22 3-6 8 6 2
T. Trim 18 1-3 2 4 0
I. Smith 1 0-0 0 0 0
Player stats
Player Min FG Pts Reb Ast
A. Weary 24 2-6 4 1 2
L. Cugini 33 3-4 10 9 2
H. McInty... 26 0-4 7 2 1
J. Brown 30 6-13 23 7 0
B. Richar... 14 1-3 2 1 0
K. James 4 0-0 0 1 0
D. Barber 12 0-0 0 1 2
A. White 1 0-1 0 0 0
A. Lindau... 15 1-5 2 1 2
J. Perez-... 2 0-0 0 0 1
T. Thomps... 13 1-3 3 1 0
D. Wallace 26 6-10 19 5 2
Game Details
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