The News-Times




When: Saturday, 1 p.m.

What: Never Forget Tribute Classic

Where: Prudential Center, Newark, New Jersey

Records: UConn (5-2), UCLA (5-2)

TV: ABC (First nationally broadcast regular season women’s basketball game)

Radio: UConn Sports Network


No offensive momentum: UConn’s offense was held to 44 points against Georgia Tech — the Huskies’ lowest scoring game since 2006. While a part of the low scoring was due to Georgia Tech’s strong defense, it’s shows that UConn is not as cohesive without star Paige Bueckers and Azzi Fudd.

Passes were intercepte­d and lost out of bounds. There was no clear play organizati­on as shots airballed one after another. Even second-chance points were left unconteste­d as UConn bigs stood and watched Georgia Tech defenders grab the rebound instead of charging after the ball.

The Huskies shot 31% from the floor for their worst shooting performanc­e since a loss to Baylor on Jan. 9, 2020 (UConn shot 29% and lost 74-58). In the fourth quarter, UConn went 2-of-12 as Georgia Tech used an 18-5 run to pull away.

UConn needs more than just its seniors to step up (Christyn Williams, Evina Westbrook and Olivia Nelson-Ododa contribute­d 36 of UConn’s 44 points on Thursday)..

Increased minutes for freshmen: Caroline Ducharme was the first player off the bench and played a career-high 29 minutes. She had five rebounds yet was 1-for-5 shooting. With only three true guards available, Ducharme’s role is likely to continue increasing until one of UConn’s injured players players return.

Amari DeBerry made her UConn debut six minutes into the second quarter. She converted her first shot attempt and was successful in her first trip to the foul line. The 6-foot-5 forward scored four points and had three rebounds in eight minutes.

“We talked a little bit before going into the game, we said sometimes when a really good player gets hurt or something happens, this happened to one of our teams years ago and they acted like a family member passed away or something,” UConn coach Geno Auriemma said after the game.

“And I said, it’s not supposed to be that. It’s not supposed to be that somebody died. It’s actually supposed to be that now other people that just kinda been existing in a uniform and showing up, now actually get a chance to live the game and be part of the game and be in the game instead of just existing and watching Paige do what she does. It’s a great opportunit­y and Amari took advantage of that opportunit­y.”

Streaks at Stake: UConn’s loss at Georgia Tech was its first loss to an unranked opponent since 2012, snapping its 240game win streak. A loss to UCLA would end another record.

The Huskies haven’t lost back-to-back games since March 1993 (87-73 at Providence in Big East Tournament and 74-71 vs Louisville in the first round of the NCAA Tournament), that’s 1,030 straight games without losing two in a row.

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