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Paige Bueckers Went Off To Lead UConn To An OT Win Over No. 1 South Carolina

The biggest game in basketball on Monday was in Storrs, Connecticut, as the No. 1 ranked South Carolina Gamecocks took on the No. 2 ranked UConn Huskies in a massive women’s college hoops showdown.

The game delivered on its promise, as the two teams went back and forth in regulation, as freshman phenom Paige Bueckers dueled with Aaliyah Boston in regulation. As the game came to a close, South Carolina had a two-point lead with just over a minute to play when Bueckers got the ball moving towards the baseline on the right and hit a tough contested pull-up to knot things at 54-54.

On South Carolina’s final possession they had a number of opportunities, as Boston continued their dominance on the glass, but couldn’t get two put-back attempts to fall and we went to overtime.

In the extra period, it was the Paige Bueckers show as she hit back-to-back pull-up jumpers after the Gamecocks went up three to give UConn a one-point lead (one almost identical to the game-tying basket in the fourth), and then put the dagger in the top-ranked team in the country with this leaning shot clock buzzer-beater that got a very friendly bounce — but one you earn when you already have 28 points.

Bueckers finished the night with 31 points and five assists, her latest spectacular performance as she’s found her footing and showing why she was the top recruit in the country, and had all nine of UConn’s points in the overtime period as she flat out took over. It’s a tough loss for South Carolina, who will feel like they had plenty of chances to get a big road win, but it wouldn’t be a surprise to anyone if these two teams met again in early April at the Final Four.

Boston finished with 17 points and 15 rebounds, dominating inside, but it was Bueckers’ shot-making that made the difference down the stretch as both defenses refused to give up anything easy.