UConn’s Christyn Williams: ‘We have Paige Bueckers and they don’t’

Bueckers scored a game-high 27 points in UConn’s win over NC State. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

UConn’s Paige Bueckers finished the first half of Monday’s Elite Eight contest against NC State with just four points. The Huskies’ lead, once in the double digits, was dwindling.

Still, Christyn Williams remained confident in her team and in the sophomore star.

“Literally, I was thinking, we have Paige Bueckers and they don’t,” Williams said.

Bueckers went on to score 15 points in the two overtime periods – 10 in the first, then the first five points of the second – to push No. 2 seed UConn to a 91-87 win over No. 1 seed NC State in Bridgeport, Conn. The star guard finished with a game-high 27 points.

Last season’s Associated Press National Player of the Year, Bueckers missed 19 games this season after a left knee injury and subsequent surgery sidelined her for more than two months. She returned to the court in late February and has helped lead the Huskies to the Final Four.

“When everyone’s healthy, they’ve got a shot to win it all, and it makes it that much harder to swallow when you didn’t quite get that done,” NC State coach Wes Moore said.

UConn advances to the national semifinals at Target Center in Minneapolis, just 10 miles from Bueckers’ hometown of Hopkins, Minn.

The Huskies, who are seeking their first national championship since 2016, will face No. 1 seed and defending champion Stanford on Friday.