Stef Dolson and Team USA are the first 3x3 basketball gold medalists in Olympic history. In the inaugural tournament, the US defeated France in the semifinals and Russia in the final, 18-15, to claim the hardware on Wednesday.
Dolson is now the 10th former UConn player to win a gold medal at the Olympics.
The Americans jumped ahead 6-1 early in the gold-medal game and built up a 10-5 lead. Russia closed in but could never get the deficit below three points. In 3x3 a basket is one point and a shot behind the three-point line is two points.
Dolson dominated on the boards with nine rebounds and had a crucial and-one to put the US up 18-14 with 31 seconds left. She finished with a team-high seven points.
FINAL: Stef Dolson and USA 3x3 win the first-ever gold medal in the competition.— Daniel Connolly (@DanielVConnolly) July 28, 2021
Dolson is the 10th former UConn player to win an Olympic gold medal pic.twitter.com/8QeJVClGx4
To get to the gold medal game, the US beat France in the semifinals, 18-16. After France tied the game at 16 with 1:07 to play, the US hit two free throws with 30 seconds and five seconds remaining, respectively, to secure the win. Dolson had five points and four rebounds.
Dolson joins an exclusive group of UConn gold medalists that includes Sue Bird, Swin Cash, Tina Charles, Asjha Jones, Rebecca Lobo, Maya Moore, Breanna Stewart, Diana Taurasi, and Kara Wolters.
Pieper and Upton face off
UConn’s two field hockey Olympians squared off against each other on Tuesday night with Cecile Pieper and Germany defeating Róisín Upton and Ireland, 4-2.
Pieper scored to put Germany ahead 2-0 in the 20th minute, her 50th career goal at the international level. Upton nearly beat her to the punch a few minutes earlier, though her drag-flick was stopped by the German keeper.
Germany jumped out to a 3-0 advantage before Ireland came roaring back with a pair of goals in the 42nd and 51st minutes. The comeback bid ultimately fell short when Germany scored just four minutes later to take a commanding 4-2 lead with just five minutes left.
Next, Germany will play South Africa on Thursday at 8:30 p.m. EST while Ireland will take on India at 10:45 p.m. EST.
Giffey, Germany take down Nigeria
Niels Giffey and Germany have their first victory in the Olympics after defeating Nigeria, 99-92. Giffey scored five points in 22 minutes but he played most of the fourth quarter and scored a big basket with under five minutes to go to put Germany up four.
6/6— Coach Jens (@coach_jens) July 28, 2021
Niels Giffey mit einer Plus-Minus Bilanz von +11 in 23 Minuten pic.twitter.com/4bkA81mB0R
Aaliyah Edwards, Kia Nurse, and the Canadian women’s basketball team will take the court for their second game of the Olympics at 9:00 p.m. EST against Korea while Gavin Edwards’s Japan squad will face Slovenia at 12:40 a.m. EST.