Hawkeyes Fall In National Championship

CLEVELAND, Ohio — Undefeated and top-ranked South Carolina defeated the second-ranked University of Iowa women’s basketball team, 87-75, on Sunday afternoon in the NCAA Championship game at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.

National Player of the Year Caitlin Clark scored a game-high 30 points, five assists and eight rebounds in her final game as a Hawkeye. Kate Martin added 16 points and five rebounds to close out her career, and Hannah Stuelke finished with 11 points.

The Hawkeyes came out hot, going on a 10-0 run in the first two and a half minutes of the game. The Gamecocks cut Iowa’s lead to two before Clark scored on back-to-back possessions to give Iowa a 27-20 lead at the end of the quarter. Clark drained three triples as a part of her 18-point explosion in the first.

The Gamecocks went on a 7-0 run to start the second to tie the score at 27. There were five ties and two lead changes in the frame before South Carolina drained a three and snagged a steal and score in the closing seconds to go into halftime with a 49-45 lead.

South Carolina scored three quick buckets to start the second half to build a nine-point lead. The Hawkeyes rallied to within two with 4:44 left before the Gamecocks pulled away, building a 68-59 lead going into the final 10 minutes.

Despite being down 14 with 7:40 left, Iowa made one final push, using a pair of free throws by Sydney Affolter and 3s from Clark and Gabbie Marshall cut the lead to six. Iowa got to within five, but South Carolina pulled away to finish the season as undefeated National Champions.

– 1-Seed South Carolina (38-0) dropped 1-Seed Iowa (34-5), 87-75, inside a sold-out Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse on Sunday afternoon.
– National Player of the Year, Caitlin Clark has registered 491 points (NCAA record), 152 assists (NCAA record), 78 3-point field goals (NCAA record) in 17 career NCAA Tournament games.
– Iowa is 1-2 all-time against USC.
– Lisa Bluder is 1-of-27 Division I women’s basketball coaches to win 20+ games in the NCAA Tournament at one institution.
– This marks Iowa’s second trip to the national title in program history.
– Clark was the first player in NCAA women’s basketball history to lead the country in scoring and make the title game.
– Iowa is first Big Ten team to compete in two consecutive national title games.
– Iowa has made 92 three-point baskets in postseason play.
– Since 2019, the Hawkeyes are 16-5 in the NCAA Tournament.
– Over the last two seasons, Iowa is 20-3 in a tournament setting.
– Bluder is 23-18 all-time in NCAA Tournaments at Iowa.
– Iowa is 7-3 all-time in the NCAA Tournament as a No. 1 Seed.
– Kate Martin and Clark have started 139 consecutive games together the longest streak by any Division I duo in the last 25 years.
– Martin has played in the second-most games in Iowa women’s basketball history. (163)
– Gabbie Marshall has played in the most games in Iowa women’s basketball history. (166)
– Clark, Marshall and Martin have started 135 games together, the second-most of any trio over the last 25 seasons.
– Over the last two seasons, Iowa has won 65 games, which is the best two-year stretch in program history.
– The Hawkeyes have made 426 treys this season, which is a Big Ten single season record.
– Clark leads the country in 20+ point games this season with 39.
– Clark is the only player in the country with 1,200+ points, 325+ assists, and 275+ rebounds this season.
– Clark has scored 20+ points in 124-of-139 career games which is the most in program history.
– Clark kept her streak alive of 95 consecutive games making a 3-point basket. (NCAA best)
– Clark is the first Division-I men’s or women’s player to record 3,900+ points, 1,100+ assists, and 950+ rebounds in a career.