Mansfield Town Council members recognized the University of Connecticut’s women’s basketball team at their meeting Monday night.
Council members passed a motion allowing Mayor Paul Shapiro to issue a proclamation in honor of the team in light of its recent accomplishment of a record-breaking 111-game winning streak.
“Congratulations to them,” councilor Virginia Raymond said.
The proclamation notes that the team won 108 of the 111 games by a double-digit margin. It also outlines some of their other successes, such as winning 80 consecutive games in American Athletic Conference play.
“Now, therefore, be it proclaimed that the Town of Mansfield does hereby extend to the UConn women’s basketball team its heartfelt congratulations and thanks for a very special and thrilling record-breaking winning streak that will be remembered for a lifetime,” the proclamation reads.
Councilor Antonia Moran suggested that the proclamation be slightly amended to reference team members’ high academic achievements.
“Does this proclamation recognize the fact that these women are also good academics, good student scholars, because I think that is one of the most amazing parts of their success,” Moran said.
Town Manager Matthew Hart said that the proclamation “probably could be strengthened in that regard.”
Councilors agreed to add a statement to the proclamation prior to its issuance that reflects the team members’ scholarly success.
“I appreciate (Moran’s) point. There are other achievements, which is the extraordinary success that women who come through this program achieve throughout their lives,” Shapiro said. “Some of them we see, those of us who watch women’s basketball on television, as commentators, but there are others, including one of the guidance counselors at E.O. Smith (High School), who was on one of (Coach) Geno Auriemma’s first teams. And there are lots of women who’ve come through the program who’ve done incredible things in their lives.”
Shapiro said he felt it is particularly important to issue the proclamation in this moment after the NCAA women’s basketball tournament.
“I think the reason for this motion now is yeah, they lost in the Final Four (of the NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament), they lost in the semifinal game, but what they achieved in their winning streak is nothing short of extraordinary. It may never again be equaled,” Shapiro said.
“Everyone was rushing out to issue proclamations when they won their fourth straight national championship in 2016, and we felt that what they achieved this year is pretty extraordinary and special, too.”
Alexandra Retter is staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.