April 13, 2024

Brighton Journal

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Kaitlyn Clark made a record 3-pointer as Iowa State won the Big Ten Championship

Kaitlyn Clark made a record 3-pointer as Iowa State won the Big Ten Championship

MINNEAPOLIS — Friday was a rough three-point shooting game for Iowa star Kaitlyn Clark, but she's had a great career from long range overall.

In the No. 2 seed Hawkeyes' 95-62 win over No. 7 Penn State in the Big Ten Tournament quarterfinals, Clark's 3-pointers gave her 164, the most ever in a single season by a Division I player (women's or men).

Clark surpassed Stephen Curry, who made 162 three-pointers for Davidson in the 2007-08 season, and Darius McGee, who made 162 three-pointers last season for Liberty. Curry and McGee both did that in 36 games. Clark has played in 31 games so far for the 27-4 Hawkeyes.

He set another record in a season full of them for Clark.

In Iowa's final regular-season game on Sunday, she passed LSU's Pete Maravich for most career points scored by a DI. On Friday, she reached the three-point mark despite one of her most memorable games.

Clark missed 11 attempts from beyond the arc before making her first with 8:41 left in the game. She raised her arms in mock celebration after the 3, drawing huge applause from the sellout crowd that was mostly Hawkeyes fans at Target Center.

“I was trolling and messing around when I did that,” Clark said. “You gotta have some fun. Sometimes it's hard to get in there and shoot the next one, but maybe that's my poison sometimes. I'll just shoot it. That's how it will be. I'd go make one before the buzzer gets to Zero, even if it takes 20 of them.”

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Clark was held without a 3-pointer just once in her Iowa State career: She went 0-for-6 from behind the arc in a win against Purdue on Jan. 13, 2022, as a sophomore.

During her career, Clark made 511 3-pointers. The NCAA women's career record was set by Oklahoma's Taylor Robertson last season with 537, though this was her fifth season due to a COVID-19 exemption from 2020-21. Clark is in her fourth season, which will be her last, as she previously announced she would enter the WNBA draft.

Despite her shooting issues — she finished 5 of 19 overall and 2 of 14 from behind the arc — Clark still leads the Hokies in scoring (24 points), rebounding (10) and assists (7). Her teammates were a combined 13 of 30 from behind the arc.

“I don't think I've ever seen her miss 11 3s in a row, and that probably includes practice and everything else,” Iowa coach Lisa Bluder said. “I'm really proud of her for the way she handled it.

“I think the best thing for us is going into a game like this because these players now have a lot of confidence. They have more confidence in themselves and in each other. If Caitlin has a bad night [shooting]Well, we can still survive this.”

Clark also tied former Ohio State star Kelsey Mitchell for most career points scored in the Big Ten Tournament, with 265. Clark will look to break that record in Saturday's semifinal against Michigan.