No surprise that these two teams were evenly matched. It was as though the coaches anticipated each other's moves...
Fast-forward to the game's waning moments. Trailing by six as the clock ticked under a minute, '04 UConn was in need of a little fortuity to stay alive. Insert Souleymane Wane of '99 UConn. Following a jumper from Taliek Brown that cut the deficit to four, Wane missed a pair of free throws. Ben Gordon then capitalized on the other end and suddenly the '04 Huskies were only down 76-74 with 46 seconds remaining. '99 UConn milked its possession, but Ricky Moore missed a long two-pointer, setting up Emeka Okafor for the game-tying bank shot as time expired.
The magic continued for the '04 Huskies in overtime, as they scored the first six points. Meanwhile, '99 UConn coughed up the ball four times in the extra stanza and didn't connect on a field goal until Richard Hamilton's three pointer to beat the final buzzer. The '04 squad won 85-82 and earned the right to represent their school in the Best of the Big East championship.
Ben Gordon rebounded from a poor performance in the Elite 8 to notch 23 points, six assists and three steals. Okafor tallied 16 points, 12 boards and 4 blocks for '04 UConn. Hamilton scored 29 points for '99 UConn, but shot just 1-for-6 in overtime. Though Jake Voskuhl didn't contribute much offensively, he did pull down a game-high 18 rebounds.
Player of the game: Ben Gordon (23 points, 6 assists, 3 steals)
Winning Percentage of 1,001 Simulations: 2003-04 Connecticut 65.0% - 1998-99 Connecticut 35.0%
Average Score of 1,001 Simulations: 2003-04 Connecticut 78.4 - 1998-99 Connecticut 74.6
View Sample Boxscore | Simulate '04 UConn vs. '99 UConn