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Caitlin Clark knocked over by fan after Ohio State upsets Iowa

COLUMBUS, OH - JANUARY 21: Ohio State Buckeyes celebrate the upset win as the Iowa Hawkeyes guard Caitlin Clark (22) and her teammates look dejected as they walk off the floor after losing in overtime on January 21, 2024, at Value City Arena in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Brian Spurlock/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Ohio State earned their first top-10 win of the season on Sunday, taking down No. 2 Iowa in a 100-92 overtime victory.

The 18th-ranked Buckeyes overcame a 12-point deficit in the fourth quarter, with sophomore Cotie McMahon scoring a career-high 33 points alongside 12 rebounds. Iowa star Caitlin Clark had a season-high 45 points, including all nine of the Hawkeye’s points in overtime. Iowa is now 0-3 when Clark scores that many points.

Fans at the game – which totaled over 18,000 – stormed the court afterward, with Clark inadvertently colliding with Buckeye a fan as she jogged toward the tunnel.

“I could see they were storming the court, which was totally fine – good for their students, great win for them,” Clark said after the game, describing the collision as being “blindsided.”

“Kind of scary, could have caused a pretty serious injury to me, and knocked the wind out of me,” she continued. “But luckily my teammates kind of picked me up and got me off the court. … “It just comes with the territory. I’m sure they tried their best to do whatever they could. Obviously it didn’t work, and that’s disappointing. Just focused now on the game and ways we can get better.”

Clark added that Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith had apologized to her for the incident, which she “really appreciated.” Iowa coach Lisa Bluder, meanwhile, was a little more upfront about her disappointment.

“That just should not happen,” Iowa coach Lisa Bluder said. “Our players should be safe. They should be able to walk off the floor. That’s very disappointing. Ohio State, great team, great environment, but obviously very disappointed with the postgame with our players getting injured trying to walk out of the gym. That’s wrong.”

Buckeye head coach Kevin McGuff agreed that the collision “shouldn’t happen to anybody” in his postgame press conference.

“Such a spectacular performance today and she’s such a great player, and that should never happen,” McGuff said after beginning his news conference by apologizing to Clark. “I feel really badly. Hopefully, she’s OK and it doesn’t affect her moving forward. That’s extremely unfortunate.

“It shouldn’t happen to anybody, but man, such a great player like Caitlin, you really hate that. I know we had security, but a student apparently beat the security, so I really feel badly about that.”

He later applauded his team for their effort in the win.

“We beat an incredible team with one of the best players to ever play our sport, and we did it in front of 18,000 people,” McGuff said. “So hopefully the significance is we can really build on that with the momentum.”