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Post-championship game breakdown, video: Kentucky

By Gavin Keefe

Publication: theday.com

Published April 08. 2014 4:00AM   Updated April 08. 2014 4:29AM

Just an incredible night and an incredible post-season run for the UConn basketball team.

The Huskies improved to a perfect four wins in four trips to the national championship game, beating Kentucky, 60-54, at AT&T Stadium. It was their second title in four years.

No other program has won more than two national titles since 1999 when UConn captured its first crown.

You have to feel good for this team. The Huskies stayed home last March Madness because of a post-season ban due to the academic sins of players before them.

And then few people expected them to last more than a few games in the NCAA tournament.

"A lot of people were picking against us and doubting us," coach Kevin Ollie said. "But I told you the last would be the first. We are first now. Last year we were last. We couldn't get in the tournament, but they kept believing."

Plus, they are really good kids. They played unselfish basketball and played for each other this season. They were a true brotherhood.

They were rewarded for their season-long efforts and commitment to the program.

"We worked so hard for this," senior Shabazz Napier said. "We didn't want to lose."

And UConn had the best backcourt in the country in Napier (22 points) and Ryan Boatright (14), who controlled the game on both ends of the court. They were simply brilliant.

Napier capped his outstanding career by earning the Final Four's most outstanding player. He will be badly missed.

The senior trio of Napier, Tyler Olander and Niels Giffey are the first UConn players to win two national championships in their careers.

Second-year head coach Kevin Ollie deserves a lot of credit, too. He got the Huskies to believe that winning a national championship was possible during good and bad times this season.

A stingy defense helped carried UConn to the finish line. The Huskies held each of their last three opponents to under 40 percent from the field and under 55 points. The Huskies converted around 88 percent from the foul line in six NCAA games.

Check out the attached video of post-game interviews with Giffey and Olander.

It's late, so that's all for now. Have to catch an early flight.

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