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STORRS, Conn. (AP) — I’ve often been a fan of March Madness.

Developing up I recall watching UConn personal it. Positive, I recall Stewie (Breanna Stewart) winning 4 in a row, but my very first memory was when Stefanie Dolson helped the Huskies win. She was my preferred UConn player increasing up.

Rapid forward to the final handful of years exactly where I’ve basically got to expertise playing in it myself. It may possibly not have been the norm with my very first year getting in the San Antonio bubble mainly because of COVID and final season I was coming back from injury, but it really is an wonderful feeling to play on the game’s most significant stage.

You function so really hard as a competitor to play in this and win at the finish of the season.

As numerous of you know this year I am out recovering from a torn ACL injury that I suffered more than the summer season. I’ve been functioning really hard more than the final six-to-seven months on rehabbing. There is nevertheless a strategies to go, but each day I am having robust and healthier. I’ve been capable to do a lot more basketball drills for the duration of practice, but nevertheless am a bit way from get in touch with.

I’ve trusted my faith and know that God does every thing for a purpose and that is helped me by means of this. Even although I can not play I’ve identified other strategies to support the group. You never see particular issues when you are playing and I’ve broken issues down on the bench providing recommendations right here and there. I’d rather be “Player P” than “Coach P” but now I do what I can to support us win.

I discovered final year by no means take something for granted when I went down with an injury and was fortunate sufficient to come back and play in my hometown of Minneapolis for the Final 4.

The season is extended and grueling and some folks get tired and I remind them that they are blessed to play basketball and play right here at UConn.

I also know that I can nevertheless be a good part model for little ones when I am not playing. I recall when I was young attempting to get Maya Moore or Lindsay Whalen’s signature and how specific that created me really feel. Anytime I am at games, I take a handful of minutes and take selfies with folks and sign autographs.

I can also be a part model in other strategies. My injury is regrettably as well popular in women’s basketball and there are numerous other folks who have gone by means of it. It is a extended procedure and I hope my recovery can support inspire other folks to hold their faith and continue to function really hard to get back wholesome.

Naturally we have 1 target in thoughts and that is winning a championship, but associate head coach Chris Dailey does a excellent job of assisting us have exciting, as well.

The other evening we had dinner at Coach’s (Geno Auriemma’s) restaurant and played a mystery game with a pajama celebration theme exactly where we had to figure out who the “Riddler” was. Every person on the group was assigned a part and coach was on the side not playing, but stirring the pot attempting to distract every person.

There is no doubt that Amari (DeBerry) and Aaliyah (Edwards) had been the most committed to their roles and costumes.

Of course Azzi (Fudd) was the culprit we had to guess. It was a exciting evening.

CD puts these issues collectively to support us get out of our apartments exactly where we devote most of the day watching basketball. Of course that is half the exciting of March Madness — watching all the games. We’re specifically excited to watch our men’s group play.

Till subsequent time, go Huskies!


UConn Huskies star Paige Bueckers is checking in periodically for the duration of the NCAA Tournament. She’s nevertheless recovering from an ACL injury.


AP March Madness coverage: and and

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