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Thrilling Showdown Turns Controversial: UConn vs. Iowa Final Four Clash

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Hawkeye fans react as Iowa rallies

Man, you know it wouldn’t be the women’s NCAA Tournament without some drama stirring up! It’s like a tradition or something.
Tune in Tonight: UConn vs. Iowa in Women’s Basketball Final Four Showdown.

Catch Caitlin Clark and the Iowa Hawkeyes take on Paige Bueckers and the UConn Huskies at 9:30pm ET, live on SiriusXM from the Huntington Convention Center of Cleveland.

UConn bounced back strong this year after last year’s Sweet 16 disappointment, clinching their Final Four spot by beating top-seeded USC 80-73. Meanwhile, it’s only the second time in history that Iowa has made it to the Final Four, their first being last year when they lost to LSU in the championship.

The winner of tonight’s game will battle it out against the victor of the NC State/South Carolina match for the championship title on April 7 at 3pm ET. Don’t miss the action.

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So, Iowa totally took down UConn vs. Iowa in that epic showdown on Friday night, right? But guess what? The talk of the town after the game wasn’t about Caitlin Clark’s insane skills or the upcoming championship showdown against the unbeaten South Carolina.

Nope, it was all about this one foul call. And get this—it wasn’t about some missed call this time.

So, there’s this moment where Aaliyah Edwards gets tagged with an offensive foul while trying to set a screen on Gabbie Marshall. And get this, it happened with less than four seconds left in the game! Talk about a game-changer, huh?

Offensive Foul

 Caitlin Clark #22 of the Iowa Hawkeyes reaches for the ball as Paige Bueckers #5 of the UConn Huskies reacts in the second half during the NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament Final Four semifinal game at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse on April 05, 2024 in Cleveland, Ohio.
 Caitlin Clark #22 of the Iowa Hawkeyes reaches for the ball as Paige Bueckers #5 of the UConn Huskies reacts in the second half during the NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament Final Four semifinal game at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse on April 05, 2024 in Cleveland, Ohio.

So, Scott Van Pelt and Andraya Carter from ESPN were totally not feeling that call either.

Carter straight-up said, “I hated the call, man.” She pointed out how Gabbie Marshall was scrapping to get around that screen, and that’s what caught the refs’ eyes. But seriously, instead of talking about Iowa’s defense or something, now everyone’s just fixated on this ref’s call. Like, come on, there were a bunch of calls missed all game long, for both sides! And to drop that bombshell call right at the very end? Talk about killing the vibe and robbing players of their chance to shine. Honestly, that call straight-up sucked, plain and simple.

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So, after the game, it was like a war of opinions in the press conferences and locker rooms.

Edwards was like, “Nah, man, that play was clean.” She was standing firm on that.

But then you’ve got Paige Bueckers coming in with this big-picture perspective. She was all, “Look, players play, alright? They’re the ones who decide the game. Sure, everyone’s making a fuss about this one play, but let’s get real here. A basketball game isn’t won or lost on just one play. You gotta zoom out and see the whole picture. Yeah, we could dissect that final four seconds, but at the end of the day, we should’ve just played better and not left it all hanging on that one moment.

So, Hannah Stuelke was giving props to Gabbie Marshall, saying she’s a beast on defense, always pulling off those clutch moves like blocks and stuff.

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And Marshall herself, she was straight-up saying, “Yeah, I felt that elbow, man. There’s video proof.” She even remembered a few other calls from that wild Friday night game.

But let’s talk about this tournament’s refs for a sec. Remember when Hannah Hidalgo got benched for more than four minutes in Notre Dame’s game just to take out her nose ring? Like, seriously? She could’ve covered it up, but nope, they made her take it out. Total BS, right? And then there was that time in Raleigh when they had to swap out a ref at halftime because she secretly got a degree from one of the schools playing. Talk about a plot twist.

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