UConn advances to Final Four with win over MSU - WFSB 3 Connecticut

UConn advances to Final Four with win over MSU

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Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo, top right, talks to his team during the first half.  (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo, top right, talks to his team during the first half. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)
UConn players and members of the media flood the court at MSG after the Huskies win. (Photo Courtesy: Eric Parker) UConn players and members of the media flood the court at MSG after the Huskies win. (Photo Courtesy: Eric Parker)
UConn students gather on Storrs campus after the Huskies win over MSU. UConn students gather on Storrs campus after the Huskies win over MSU.
Point guard Shabazz Napier being interviewed after UConn defeats MSU. (Photo Courtesy: John Holt) Point guard Shabazz Napier being interviewed after UConn defeats MSU. (Photo Courtesy: John Holt)
Fans celebrate the UConn win at Buffalo Wild Wings in Wethersfield. Fans celebrate the UConn win at Buffalo Wild Wings in Wethersfield.
STORRS, CT (WFSB) -

UConn men's basketball team is heading to the Final Four.

The Huskies defeated the Michigan State Spartans 60-54 in their Elite Eight matchup at Madison Square Garden on Sunday afternoon. 

After a hot start by the Huskies, the Spartans led 25-21 at halftime. Michigan State ended the half on 23-9 run.

"UConn ice cold from field making just 8 of 29 shots, most of them early," WFSB's own John Holt tweeted.

The Huskies jumped out to an early 12-2 lead, but going "ice cold from field."

However, UConn bounced back in the second half lead by point guard Shabazz Napier, who had 25 points. He also had six rebounds and four assists.

Forward DeAndre Daniels scored 12 points and guard Ryan Boatright had 11 points.

Huskies will face Number 1 seed Florida on April 5 in Arlington, Texas.

Following the game, large groups of UConn students celebrated throughout the Storrs campus. Police said it was not a riot and reported no injuries.

Some students may have let their excitement go a bit too far. In video sent to Eyewitness News students were crowd surfing, throwing toilet paper and lighting newspaper on fire outside of Gampel Pavilion.

At least one person was taken away in handcuffs because of this incident. There was no word from UConn Police is others were arrested on the Storrs campus after the game.

"We just came up around then as the crowds were leaving and everyone was just super excited," said UConn student Colleen Corrigan.

Police broke up the crowd minutes later and students left behind a mess, which campus crews were out cleaning up.

Fans at local sports bars also had the same type of reaction. The Buffalo Wild Wings in Wethersfield was packed until the buzzer sounded.

"This is totally crazy right now. I went to UConn two years ago and I feel right back in college," Vo Tran said.

These proud UConn fans are now crossing their fingers that UConn goes all the way.

"When it's March Madness UConn always comes ready to play," Tran said.

After defeating Iowa State in the Sweet Sixteen on Friday, UConn men's basketball team advanced the Huskies to the Elite Eight. UConn defeated St. Joe's in overtime, 89-81, during the first round and Villanova, 77-65, in the round of 32.

Sunday's game was the 11th Elite Eight appearance for the Husky men who have won four of their last six regional finals. The last time the Husky men were in the Elite Eight was 2011.

During the game, Napier tied with Ray Allen for fourth most points in UConn history with 1,922.

Students at UConn told Eyewitness News they were impressed by both the men's and women's basketball teams.

The UConn women are also advanced to the Elite Eight to play Texas A&M on Monday night. They are undefeated and beat Brigham Young University, 70-51, Saturday in Lincoln, NE.

Many students told Eyewitness News that they wanted to go to the men's game in New York City, but the tickets are too expensive.

"It's so expensive. I would have gone if I had gotten a ticket, but it's like $600," said student Alex Lewson.

It's a little too pricey for a college student. There are tickets on StubHub that go as high as $4,000.

"It's also so hard to get to NYC from here, but it's cool to watch them from here," Alex Lewson said.

However, the Elite 8 game was sold out. Fans, who were willing to spend some cash, got some help with transportation to New York City on game night. Metro-North ran an extra train on Sunday to accommodate fans. 

The train called the "Huskies Fan Express" left New Haven at 10:40 a.m. and headed to Grand Central Station. The train will be ready to pick up fans once the game ends.

"I think their chances are great. I was happy to see Louisville lose because Louisville had their numbers, but I think we can do this but obviously each one of these things gets harder and harder as we go along," Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said.

While some student's aren't heading to New York City, they are still planning to cheer their team on.

"We are hoping they get another win. We will see what they can do," Emily Lewson said.

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Cooper Tires
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