In a standout performance, Caitlin Clark, the basketball prodigy from Iowa, reached another milestone on Wednesday night at Northwestern, leading her team to an impressive 110-74 victory and securing her place as the second-highest scorer in NCAA women’s basketball history.
As the Naismith women’s college player of the year for the 2022-23 season, Clark surpassed former Ohio State star Kelsey Mitchell (3,402) with a layup, advancing to the second spot on the all-time scoring list during the second quarter. Initially occupying the fourth position on the career scoring list, trailing Jackie Stiles of Missouri State by four points and Mitchell by 13, Clark also surpassed Stiles as the Big Ten’s all-time leading scorer.
Clark’s stellar performance included scoring 35 points, marking her fifth consecutive 30-point game, equalling her career-long streak. With a total of 3,424 career points, she now aims to break the NCAA’s all-time scoring record of 3,527, currently held by Washington’s Kelsey Plum.
Reflecting on her accomplishment, Clark expressed admiration for the players she now joins in the record books, stating, “The coolest thing is just the names I get to be around. Those are people I grew up watching, especially Brittney Griner, Kelsey Mitchell, those are really, really good players, people that are still playing our game at the very highest level, people that you watch night in and night out.”
In addition to her scoring prowess, Clark showcased all-around excellence with 10 assists, six rebounds, two steals, and a block in the game. Despite facing challenges with her 3-point shooting, she demonstrated her ability to attack the basket and convert free throws effectively.
Iowa coach Lisa Bluder commended Clark’s achievement, highlighting not only her scoring prowess but also her impressive 10 assists in the game. Clark, a senior from West Des Moines, Iowa, has consistently set records for her alma mater, becoming the all-time leader in points, assists, and 3-pointers made.
With an average of 32.1 points per game, Clark is on track to potentially break Plum’s scoring record on Feb. 15 against Michigan. Despite acknowledging her shooting struggles in the recent game, Clark’s relentless attacking style and versatility continue to make her a formidable force on the court.
The game at Northwestern’s Welsh-Ryan Arena drew a sellout crowd of 7,039, a first for a women’s basketball game at the venue. Clark’s popularity consistently leads to record crowds at various venues throughout the season. Reflecting on the fan support, Clark noted, “Being 22 years old, it’s hard for me to wrap my head around. It’s something that, once I’m done playing basketball and my career’s over, you’ll look back and be like, ‘Wow, those are some of the best memories of my life, getting to play in these environments with my best friends.'”