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Iowa and University of South Carolina Set for 2024 NCAA Women’s Basketball Championship Game

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The University of Iowa and superstar Caitlin Clark are set for consecutive trips to the NCAA Women’s Basketball Championship Game as the team prevailed in a nail-biter Final Four faceoff against University of Connecticut.

The final matchup finishes out a dream March Madness tournament for NCAA Women’s Basketball, as star players such as Clark and LSU’s Angel Reese and others have grabbed the spotlight. South Carolina heads into the championship with a 37-0 undefeated season. Clark has emerged as a generationally talented star who now ranks as the highest-scoring NCAA basketball player in the association’s history, male or female.

Clark powered her Hawkeyes team to a 71-69 victory. The game was down to a one-point margin, 70-69 with Iowa in the lead, in the last few seconds of the game.

Earlier in the day, the University of South Carolina defeated North Carolina State, 78-59, to secure its berth in the national championship, to be played Sunday evening at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse Arena in Cleveland, Ohio.

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The NCAA women’s basketball tourney has seized the nation’s attention this year to an unprecedented degree, significantly overshadowing the attention paid to the action in the men’s brackets. Clark’s record-smashing run during the past year helped draw attention to the overwhelming number of stars competing in this year’s tournament, from LSU’s Angel Reese to UConn’s Paige Bueckers to USC’s star freshman JuJu Watkins to the University of South Carolina’s Kamilla Cardoso. Clark, who last month became the highest-scoring basketball player male or female in NCAA history, Reese and Cardoso have declared their intention to contend in the WNBA draft for 2025.

ESPN’s April 1 telecast of the LSU-Iowa Elite 8 game that sent Iowa to the Final Four drew 12.3 million viewers, by far a women’s college hoops TV record. That game had extra heat as it was a rematch of last year’s NCAA championship game, in which LSU prevailed 102-85. And it bodes well for a big ratings turnout for Friday’s Final Four games and Sunday’s championship.