UConn defeats Butler to win NCAA titleConnecticut overcame a sub-par performance by All-American guard Kemba Walker with an inspired second-half rally to defeat Butler 53-41 on Monday and win the NCAA basketball tournament for the third time in their history.
Connecticut (32-9) broke the game open when Jeremy Lamb scored 11 points during a 22-3 run that turned a six-point deficit into a 41-28 lead with less than six minutes to play.
Walker, the Huskies’ leading scorer with an average of 23.7 points per game, finished with a team-high 16 points on five-of-19 shooting from the floor but missed all four of his 3-point attempts.
Butler (28-10) hit only 12 of 64 shots (18.8 percent) to lose in the national championship game for the second consecutive year.
The Bulldogs’ two best players, Shelvin Mack and Matt Howard, shot a combined five for 28, dooming Butler’s chances of pulling off an upset over the Big East tournament champions.
The Bulldogs shot 22 percent in the opening half but had a 22-19 lead by virtue of hitting five 3-pointers, while Connecticut missed all five of their shots beyond the arc.
Connecticut and their Hall of Fame coach Jim Calhoun won NCAA titles in 1999 and 2004.