Women's Basketball Falls To Top-Ranked Connecticut, 96-50
Jan 12, 2002
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – When Connecticut’s offense sputtered early against MIAMI, the top-ranked Huskies simply turned up their defense.
Swin Cash had 17 points and 15 rebounds as the Huskies romped 96-50 Saturday, extending their home winning streak to 41 games.
“They are as good as it gets,” MIAMI coach Ferne Labati said. “You make one little mistake and they are off in the transition defense.”
UConn (18-0, 4-0 Big East) defeated MIAMI for the 15th straight time, getting 35 points off 24 turnovers. Cash had three of UConn’s six blocks. The Huskies also had 15 steals.
Cash got most her baskets inside off the transition game. She had 13 points and 10 rebounds while playing just 15 minutes in the first half.
UConn never trailed, but stumbled early with six turnovers in the first seven minutes. The Huskies held a 12-11 lead after a 6-0 MIAMI run, a spurt capped by Sheila James’ layup off her own steal.
“We came out wanting to be real aggressive and sometimes when you force the issue, things don’t work out,” Cash said. “Once we relaxed and got into the flow we started defending really well.”
The Huskies’ transition game then got going and MIAMI (9-6, 2-3) was unable to put up much resistance. The Huskies broke open the game with a 16-2 run, getting nine points from Diana Taurasi for a 28-13 lead with 9:07 left. Three minutes later the Huskies extended the lead to 35-15.
“We have to make sure our defense starts our offense, and that’s exactly what happened in the first half,” UConn coach Geno Auriemma said.
The Hurricanes did not score consecutive baskets for the rest of the half and trailed 47-19 at the break. MIAMI shot 25 percent in the first half and finished at 30 percent, making 22 of 73 shots.
“When they get their run against you, you’ve got to be able to get two or three or get on the foul line. We never answered with any points at all,” Labati said. “They go to the boards with passion.”
Asjha Jones also scored 17 points and Taurasi finished with 14 for UConn.
The Huskies dominated the post, outrebounding the Hurricanes 53-32 and outscoring them 56-28 in the paint. Reserve forward Ashley Battle matched career-highs with 13 rebounds and four steals.
Battle, who scored 11 points, had been looking forward to playing the ‘Canes. She tore a ligament in her left elbow last season against MIAMI and sat out the rest of the season as a medical redshirt.
“I wanted to come out real aggressive. Especially against MIAMI,” Battle said. “I think my shot is coming along, and my defense has always been there.”
Chanivia Brousssard led MIAMI with 18 points and Meghan Saake had 10.