Caitlin Clark celebrates Lauren Lee’s long shot — Nov. 28, 2023

Lauren Lee was in the stands with her River Ridge girls basketball teammates when she was picked to attempt a half-court shot. 

The Royal Knights junior was among thousands of fans in the arena to watch defending national title finalist Iowa take on Fort Wayne in the Gulf Coast Showcase. 

Trying a shot like that on such a big stage was enough pressure. But Lee’s attempt, which took place between the third and fourth quarter, came while the nation’s premier long-range shooting specialist, Hawkeye star Caitlin Clark, was huddled just a few feet away with her teammates. 

After dribbling the ball a few times, Lee squared up and lofted a shot that sailed high and seemed to hang for a moment like a burnt orange moon among the lights.

The crowd grew hushed. Then the shot sailed in. 

Fans roared. 

Better still, Clark emerged from her huddle and raised her hands in triumph as a nod of approval.  

“It was pretty surreal,” Lee said,

Lee had plenty of confidence because of her work ethic.

“They picked the right one (to attempt that shot),” River Ridge coach Joeyn Dearsman said. “We practice those.”

For making the shot, Lee took home lots of tournament swag. But that was not as memorable as sinking that what-the-heck heave in front of one of women’s college basketball’s biggest stars.  

“Seeing Caitlin celebrating the shot with me is something I’ll never forget,” Lee said.