Arlington, TX, United States (NewsBahn) – Connecticut captured its second NCAA men’s basketball title in four years, toppling Kentucky 60-54 in the championship game Monday night at AT&T Stadium.
Shabazz Napier scored 22 points and UConn connected on all 10 of its free throws to improve to 32-8 while winning its fourth overall crown.
UConn led throughout, building a double-digit early advantage while taking a 35-31 lead into intermission.
Kentucky, with five freshman starters, the first such group since the Chris Webber-led Michigan squad, never could quite take control of the contest despite keeping it close.
James Young (20 points) nailed a pair of free throws with just over eight minutes remaining as Kentucky drew within 48-47, but Napier and Niels Giffey answered with treys as UConn held off the ‘Cats for the win.
Kentucky, which missed 11 of 24 attempts at the charity stripe, finished the season 29-11.