There is nothing more exciting than a back-and-forth game with just minutes left in a game. The anticipation and excitement of waiting to see who will come out victorious is like nothing else. It all comes down to the final few seconds, and even then, you are still not sure who is going to pull it out. Womens basketball has seen some incredible game winning buzzer beaters this season and we are sure to see many more as we enter March.
When you think of game winning shots in Women’s basketball chances are you will think back to the 2018 NCAA Tournament where Notre Dame’s star, Arike Ogunbowale hit a step-back two from just inside the arch to lift the Fighting Irish over UConn. If you think that is crazy, in the National Championship game with just 3 seconds left and the score tied 58-58, Ogunbowale did it again! Coming off the inbounds she brought to the corner and heaved it up from behind the arch and nailed it, giving Notre Dame the win over Mississippi state and the 2018 National Championship.
This year’s regular season contest between No 20 Notre Dame and the Louisville Cardinals, after what was a close four quarters, the game went into overtime. With just 15 seconds left, Cassandre Prosper, a mid-season acquisition for the Fighting Irish made a layup to give Notre Dame a four-point lead over the Cardinals. After the Cardinals tied it up 76-76, Notre Dame had one last chance to stay atop of the AP rankings and come out victorious. Sonia Citron was the in bounder for Notre Dame after a timeout was called to advance the ball to mid-court. She finds Kylee Watson who hands it off to sophomore guard Olivia Miles who takes a couple of dribbles, had a split second to set her feet and with time expiring, let it fly and it went in! Notre Dame was able to cap off an incredible game with an even better shot.
In a conference game between the Siena Saints and the Niagara Purple Eagles, what looked like it could be Saints victory after scoring 30 points in the second quarter to give the Saints a 20-point lead over the Purple Eagles, was anything but an easy victory. Niagara came out of the half ready to do whatever it was going to take to get the victory. They outscored the Saints in the final two quarters, 52-36 and brought the game within two with 58 seconds left. After a turnover and a steal by Maddy Yelle, and a foul by Valencia Fontenelle-Posson’s sent Niagara’s Angel Parker to line. Parker made both free throws, tying the game at 79. It seemed as if the Purple Eagles were going to walk out of the UHY Center with an amazing comeback victory. Siena star freshman had other plans. After drawing the foul, Elisa Mevius split her free throws to give the Saints the lead with 9 seconds left. Niagara finds Parker down low who banks a layup to give the Purple Eagle the lead with only 4 seconds left. The Saints now without any timeouts having to go the length of the court inbound the ball to Mevius who brings it just past the logo and heaves it. It banked off the backboard and the Saints were narrowly able to escape with a victory after almost blowing a 20-point halftime lead.
Finally, A top ten match-up between the No 6 Iowa Hawkeyes and the No 2 Indiana Hoosiers. Two teams looking to prove themselves before the start of the NCAA Tournament. The Hoosiers are looking to continue their two-month winning streak and close out their regular season with a win over the Hawkeyes. Although in a sold-out Carver-Hawkeye Arena that would be hard to do. From the first minutes of the first quarter, you knew this game was going to come down to the final seconds. After going back and forth for the final few minutes of the fourth quarter. With 4.6 seconds left in the game, tied at 83 Indiana’s Grace Berger in bounds the ball to Mackenzie Holmes who takes it to the rim and gets fouled with 1.5 seconds left. After making both free-throws giving Indiana the advantage, the Hawkeyes call timeout to advance the ball to try and get one last chance to upset the No 2 team in front of their home crowd. Kate Martin is set to inbound the ball for the Hawkeyes coming out of the time out. She finds Iowa’s starting junior guard, Caitlin Clark who comes off a screen, catches the ball, and immediately launches it from deep and drains it to win it for the Hawkeyes.
Buzzer beaters can make an already thrilling game that much better. Although we have already seen a handful of games decided by these last seconds shots this season and there will be as we head into the most exciting time of year for many basketball fans, March Madness.