Iowa-UConn March Madness clash ends in controversy with brutal offensive foul: ‘That call sucked’

It’s hardly a big game these days without a controversial officiating decision.

And the NCAA women’s Final Four clash between Iowa and UConn on Friday night was no different.

UConn had a chance to win it after forcing back-to-back turnovers. They had the ball, trailing 70-69, with 10 seconds left after calling timeout.

But Aaliyah Edwards was subsequently called for an illegal screen with 3.9 seconds remaining, and the whistle appeared to be marginal.

Gabbie Marshall, who was screened by Edwards, seemed to sell the call, as Edwards hardly moved after planting and establishing herself for the screen.

Edwards moved her left leg slightly into Marshall, but it did not seem to be enough to warrant the call, especially with how the game was officiated up until that point.

UConn then fouled Caitlin Clark, who hit 1 of 2 free throws before Iowa held on to win, 71-69.

It marred what ended up being a thrilling clash that lived up to all the billing.

And the questionable call immediately drew widespread condemnation.


Aaliyah Edwards was called for an illegal screen in the final seconds of UConn's Final Four loss to Iowa.
Aaliyah Edwards was called for an illegal screen in the final seconds of UConn’s Final
Four loss to Iowa. Screengrab

“There’s probably an illegal screen call that you could make on every single possession,” UConn coach Geno Auriemma said after the game. “I just know that there were three or four of them called on us and I don’t think there were any called on them.”

ESPN’s Andraya Carter on “SportsCenter” went as far as to say: “I don’t even know if I can say this on TV, but that call sucked.”

LeBron James echoed that sentiment.


Aaliyah Edwards was called for an illegal screen in the final seconds of UConn's Final Four loss to Iowa.
Aaliyah Edwards was called for an illegal screen in the final seconds of UConn’s
Final Four loss to Iowa. Screengrab

“NAAAAAHHHHHH!!!” he posted on X, formerly Twitter. “I ain’t rolling with that call.”

UConn legend and Phoenix Mercury star Diana Taurasi chimed in as well.

“That’s a terrible call,” she said on the postgame show. “We always talk about, let the players decide the game, especially a benign call like that where you really didn’t affect the player. They still got over the screen, it’s just tough to end the game like that. … You want players to decide it, and we didn’t get that tonight, which was disappointing.”

Even former LSU superstar Angel Reese, whose Tigers were eliminated by Iowa in the Elite Eight, had the same sentiment.

“Wait was that screen not set clean?” she wrote on X.

Iowa will face undefeated South Carolina in the NCAA Tournament championship game on Sunday.

Clark overcame early struggles to finish with 21 points, while Hannah Stuelke led Iowa in scoring with 23.

Paige Bueckers and Edwards led UConn in scoring with 17 apiece.


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