The road to victory: The UConn story

Junior point guard Kemba Walker has lead his UConn Huskies to an undefeated record in tournament games this season en route to a National Championship. (Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, user American Odyssey)

The University of Connecticut; an unlikely story.

UConn went only 21-9 in the regular season and 9-9 in their conference, but they are now the National Champions.

The Huskies started their season off strong, winning their first ten games, three of which included the Maui Invitational.

In Maui, UConn was able to shut down Witchita State, who went on to win the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) this year. The Huskies then powered past Michigan State with a three point victory, before destroying Kentucky by 17 points in the finale of the Invitational.

After the tournament, the Huskies's season hit some ups and downs thanks to the tough Big East schedule, beating teams such as Villanova and Georgetown and losing to teams like Louisville and St. John's.

However, when it was time to step to the plate, UConn delivered miraculously.

The Huskies pulled the upset in the Big East Tournament by winning five games in five days. Truly spectacular. 

UConn wiped the court with DePaul, 97-71.

UConn smashed Georgetown, 79-62. 

UConn squeashed past the number one seed, Pittsburgh, 76-74.

The Huskies delivered again beating Syracuse with a score of 76-71 in overtime.

UConn then defeated Louisville, 69-66, allowing them to hoist the Big East trophy high.

Five wins. Five Days.

The Huskies weren't done yet.

They recieved a No. 3 seed in the Southeast Region of the NCAA Tournament, lining up their first victim, the Bucknell Bison, whom Connecticut went on to defeat in a crushing fashion, 81-52.

The Huskies advanced to the round of 32, where they conquered the Cincinnati Bearcats, a fellow Big East team, 69-58.

UConn strolled into the Sweet 16 where they encountered the mighty 2nd-seeded San Diego State Aztecs, who held a solid record of 32-2 upon entering the NCAA tournament. 

UConn convincingly defeated the Aztecs, 74-67.

The Huskies took on 5th-seeded Arizona in the Elite Eight. The Arizona Wildcats had defeated the top-seeded Duke Blue Devils in the previous round; however the momentum wasn't enough for them to stop the Huskies.

UConn went on to defeat the Wildcats in a nail-biter, 65-63.

The Final Four brought the Huskies up against another team of Wildcats; this time from Kentucky.  The University of Kentucky Wildcats beat No. 13 Princeton, No. 5 West Virginia, No. 1 Ohio State, and No. 2 North Carolina to earn their hard-earned way into the Final Four.

The Huskies defeated the UK Wildcats by a one-point margin with the final score reading 56-55.

Next stop, the National Championship.

UConn met the 8th-seeded Butler Bulldogs from the Southwest Region in the Championship.

Butler started off in the round of 64 defeating Old Dominion University, 60-58. Butler then upset the No. 1 seed from the Southwest Region, Pittsburgh, 71-70. 

In the Sweet 16, the Bulldogs defeated the Badgers of Wisconsin by a score of 61-54.

The Elite Eight brought more of a struggle. Butler took The University of Florida to overtime before slaying the Gators, 74-71. 

The Bulldogs then took on the "Cinderella Story" team of the Northeast, the Virginia Commonwealth Rams in the Final Four. It wasn't easy, but Butler pulled through, winning 70-62.

The championship game took place in Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas. 

The game wasn't pretty.

Butler led by three points at the half, outscoring UConn, 22-19, but the  Huskies came back in the second half, outscoring Butler 34-19.

The Huskies went on to defeat the Bulldogs 53-41 to become the national champions, the top dogs of the college basketball world.

Butler shot 18.8 percent from the field, while UConn performed only slightly better, shooting 34.5 percent.

Connecticut destoyed Butler in the paint, outscoring them 26-2.  A margin that was nearly unthinkable.

UConn was lead to victory by superior playing from junior Kemba Walker and outstanding performances from freshman Jeremy Lamb and sophomore Alex Oriakhi.

Congratualations to the University of Connecticut Huskies. Their victory was more than well-deserved.

Also thank you for allowing my bracket to correctly predict the winner this year, Kansas let me down last year.

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