Cardinal Unable to Snap UConn Win Streak
Dec. 23, 2009
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) -- Maya Moore scored 23 points and Tina Charles added 20 to help top-ranked UConn win its 49th straight game, an 80-68 victory over No. 2 Stanford on Wednesday night in front of a sellout crowd of 16,294.
The Huskies (10-0) won their first nine games this season by at least 25 points and an average of 46. UConn hadn't faced a team the caliber of the Cardinal, who the Huskies beat last season in the national semifinals en route to a perfect 39-0 record and sixth NCAA title.
The Cardinal (9-1) proved to be no match as UConn extended the third-longest winning streak in women's basketball history. UConn won 70 straight from 2001-03 and Louisiana Tech had a 54-game streak from 1980-82.
Stanford, which beat then-No. 7 Duke and third-ranked Tennessee last week, was the last team to beat UConn, topping the Huskies in the 2008 Final Four.
It was the 44th meeting of the top two teams in the poll: No. 1 leads 25-19. UConn has been involved in 13 of those games, going 11-2--including an 8-1 mark as the No. 1 team.
Kalana Greene added 17 points and Tiffany Hayes had 16 for UConn, which has won every game during its current run by at least 10 points.
UConn trailed 44-42 early in the second half before going on a 30-6 run over the next 11 minutes. Greene started the spurt with a layup and Moore's 3-pointer with 15:01 gave UConn a 49-44 lead. The Huskies had made just one of their first 14 3s before then.
JJ Hones answered with a 3-pointer to bring the Cardinal back within two, but UConn then rattled off 10 straight points-- including five by Charles to take a 12-point lead and bring the first sellout crowd at the XL Center for the UConn women since they played Tennessee on Jan. 6, 2007, to its feet.
Ogwumike finally ended a 3 1/2 -minute drought with a layup. UConn scored the next six points on layups to make it 65-49 with 9:30 left. Hayes' layup with 5:51 left gave UConn a 22-point lead.
Stanford would only get within 12 the rest of the game.
The first 20 minutes was an offensive showcase. UConn led 19-10 early before Stanford went on a 15-2 run capped by Pedersen's jumper that made it 25-21 midway through the first half. Pedersen and Ogwumike had 11 of the Cardinal's 15 points during the spurt. It was the biggest deficit UConn faced all season. The Huskies had only trailed for a total of 2:38 in their first nine games.
The teams traded baskets the rest of the half and Stanford led 40-38 at the break. It was the first time UConn found itself down at halftime since the 2008 loss to the Cardinal.
Ogwumike had 16 points and Pedersen 12 as Stanford shot 57 percent from the field in the half. Charles scored 12 and Moore 11 for the Huskies, who were at 50 percent from the field, but just 1 of 13 from behind the 3-point line.
At 5-5, Stanford is one of the rare teams to have success against UConn since Geno Auriemma took over the program in 1985. Wednesday was the Cardinal's first regular-season trip to Connecticut since Jan. 20, 1993--and only second all-time. Connecticut will go to Stanford next season.
Connecticut honored the 1999-2000 championship team at halftime. That team, led by Sue Bird, Swin Cash, and Svetlana Abrosimova, won the second of UConn's national championships.
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