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UConn women’s basketball’s Paige Bueckers named AP First Team All-American

Bueckers becomes just the third freshman ever to earn the honor.

Big East Women’s Basketball Tournament - Championship Photo by Benjamin Solomon/Getty Images

Paige Bueckers’ historic freshman season continues. On Wednesday, Bueckers became just the third freshman ever to be named an AP First Team All-American, joining UConn legend Maya Moore (2008) and Oklahoma’s Courtney Paris (2006).

Bueckers received 28 of 30 total first-place votes. Louisville’s Dana Evans, South Carolina’s Aaliyah Boston, Kentucky’s Rhyne Howard, and Baylor’s NaLyssa Smith round out the first team while Iowa freshman Caitlin Clark made the second team.

Two UConn players — Olivia Nelson-Ododa and Christyn Williams — were named honorable mention All-Americans.

This season, Bueckers led UConn with 19.7 points, 6.1 assists, and 2.3 steals per game while shooting 47.4 percent from beyond the arc. She has 146 assists total, shattering the Huskies’ freshman record of 123 previously held by Renee Montgomery and Pam Webber. Bueckers also set the program’s single-game record for assists with 14 against Butler on Feb. 27.

The freshman also became just the second player to win Big East Player and Freshman of the Year (along with Moore) and took home the Big East Tournament’s Most Outstanding Player award.

“Name one player that’s taken a team this young to where we are today,” head coach Geno Auriemma said when asked if Bueckers should win national player of the year. “Who’s done more than her? And if you can give me a better argument, then I’d say I’ll vote for them, too. But I don’t think you can.”

This is the eighth straight year that at least one UConn player has made the AP’s First Team. Overall, Bueckers is the 17th UConn player to be named an AP First Team All-American, joining Rebecca Lobo (1995), Jennifer Rizzotti (1996), Kara Wolters (1996, ‘97), Nykesha Sales (1998), Svetlana Abrosimova (2000), Shea Ralph (2000), Sue Bird (2002), Diana Taurasi (2003, ’04), Maya Moore (2008-11), Renee Montgomery (2009), Tina Charles (2010), Breanna Stewart (2014-16), Moriah Jefferson (2016), Napheesa Collier (2017, ’19), Katie Lou Samuelson (2017, ’18), and Megan Walker (2020).

On Monday, UConn finished first in the final AP Poll before the NCAA Tournament. The Huskies are the No. 1 seed in the River Walk region and will play 16-seed High Point in the opening round on Sunday at 8 p.m. on ESPN.