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Top Dogs: Clark, Boston in Final Four Spotlight

National Player of the Year Winners Highlight Iowa-South Carolina Matchup

College basketball fans will finally get to see two of women’s basketball’s best go head-to-head when Caitlin Clark and the Iowa Hawkeyes meet Aliyah Boston and the South Carolina Gamecocks in the Final Four.

The matchup has been highly anticipated after the chance for the teams to meet in last year’s NCAA Tournament was squandered when Iowa was upset by Creighton in the second round, a loss not found in many March Madness predictions.

Caitlin Clark #22 of the Iowa Hawkeyes
Caitlin Clark #22 of the Iowa Hawkeyes | Greg fiume/getty images/afp

Now, with a National Player of the Year trophy on the shelves of both Clark and Boston, each player’s continued dominance has raised the excitement for the Final Four matchup with a trip to the national championship on the line.

Boston, who won National Player of the Year last season on the way to leading South Carolina to an NCAA title, is a big reason why the Gamecocks remain undefeated and on the hunt for back-to-back championships.

However, Clark, named the 2023 Naismith Trophy winner this week, is looking to spoil the fun with another dominant performance for Iowa’s No. 1-ranked offense.

Clark averaged 27.3 points and 8.6 assists a game, helping her become the first Division 1 player to surpass 900 points and 300 assists in a season. She is coming off a 40-point triple-double in Iowa’s win over Louisville in the Elite Eight.

Boston hasn’t put up quite the same offensive numbers as Clark, averaging 13.2 points this season, but her defensive prowess has contributed to South Carolina being one of the nation’s top defenses. She was named the Naismith Defensive Player of the Year for the second year in a row and leads the Gamecocks with an average of 9.8 boards and two blocks a game. South Carolina leads the nation with nine blocks a game.

Clark and Boston aren’t likely to match up against one another in Friday’s Final Four matchup. The 6-foot-5 Boston plays inside at forward while Clark is a do-it-all guard. Still, showcasing their talent and surrounded by their teams’ skills should make Friday’s meeting another must-see game.

Women’s College Basketball odds are giving South Carolina a 12-point edge in the matchup, but March Madness expert picks are taking Iowa with the points. Place your bet online and make your March Madness picks before the big game tips at 9 p.m. ET Friday.

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