The shot had little to do with the final outcome today at Madison Square Garden. Yet, it meant so much to UConn freshman walk-on and Ansonia resident Tierney Lawlor and the Huskies.
Lawlor made a 3-pointer with 18 seconds left in UConn’s 80-47 win over No. 21 California in the Maggie Dixon Classic. The crowd erupted. Her group of supporters rose to their feet as Lawlor ran back on defense wearing a huge smile and pumping her fist.
“It was awesome,’’ Lawlor said. “I was excited it went in. It was a great feeling.’’
Lawlor’s teammates too erupted on the bench after she made her only shot attempt of the game. And Coach Geno Auriemma had a huge smile on his face.
“That’s unbelievable, isn’t it,’’ Auriemma said. “Did you see her reaction? I looked up at the scoreboard and I thought maybe the score was 78-77 and that was the game-winner, because that kid acted like that was the shot of the century. And you know what? That’s what sports are all about. A kid like that. You think last year that kid was sitting at home going, `You know what? Next year at Christmastime, I’m going to be at Madison Square Garden and I’m going to knock in a 3 on my only shot attempt.’ You’ve got to be crazy. The kid is living a dream. And God bless her, she deserves it because she works her butt off every day in practice. And the kids love her. The kids’ reaction was probably just as great as hers. That’s what you love about sports, when you have opportunities to see kids do stuff like that.’’