Friday's Final Four game between Stanford and UConn features ties to Western New York

Tara VanDerveer Stanford
Posted at 1:40 PM, Apr 01, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-01 13:40:53-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — There's always a Buffalo connection and that rings true this weekend at the NCAA Women's Basketball Championship Weekend with four teams vying for a title.

Friday night's Final Four game between no. 1 seed Stanford and no. 2 seed UConn at 9:30, will feature two WNY connections going up against each other.

Stanford, the reigning national champions, are led by Tara VanDerveer, a Buffalo Seminary alumna. VanDerveer's alma mater got together for a pep rally to wish her and her team good luck.

VanDerveer played two years with the school before graduating in 1971, and went on to play at the collegiate level at Albany and Indiana. VanDerveer is currently the all-time winningest coach in Division-I women's basketball, passing legendary Tennessee coach Pat Summit's mark in December 2020. A member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and Women's Basketball Hallf of Fame, she's also a member of the Greater Buffalo, Buffalo Seminary, and Chautauqua Hall of Fames.

UConn's roster includes freshman Amari DeBerry, a Williamsville South alum and former Super 7 athlete of the week. Her alma mater wished her good luck on social media Friday afternoon.

In her first season with the Huskies, DeBerry has appeared in 15 games and has 25 points, 12 assists, seven blocks, and three steals. During her time with the Billies, DeBerry surpassed 2,000 career points and averaged nearly 20 points a game her senior year.

The Final Four takes place Friday night with the Championship Game set for Sunday.