University of Connecticut (UConn) Huskies junior guard Kemba Walker continues to show why he’s considered one of the best players in the nation as he helped top-seeded Connecticut advance to its fourth Final Four appearance in school history, and second in three years.

Walker led UConn (30-9) with 20 points and seven assists as they escaped with a 65-63 victory over No. 5 Arizona in the NCAA Tournament’s West Region championship on March 26 in Anaheim, Calif.

UConn freshman sensation Jeremy Lamb also performed well, scoring 19 points with four rebounds.

Arizona (30-8) had a chance to win it, but a last-second three-point attempt by senior forward Jamelle Horne clanked off the rim. UConn will face the winner of the East regional finals, either fourth-seeded Kentucky or second-seeded North Carolina.

The Huskies have now won nine straight games, dating back to their Big East Championship Tournament run in early March.

UConn Head Coach Jim Calhoun said “Never did I imagine a team winning nine games in tournament play in 19 days”. “These brothers, these young guys, have just given me a thrill beyond compare. Our march in the past nine games, I haven’t experienced anything like this.”

Calhoun’s squad has plenty to be proud of, after missing the tournament altogether just last season. But Walker told reporters his teammates aren’t satisfied with their success so far.

“This is no time to be tired… I only feel tired after everything is over,” Walker said. “When I’m playing, it’s no problem. I’m good…We’re trying to get as far as possible. We want to win this whole thing.”

Perry Green

AFRO Sports Editor