UConn shot 23-for-35 in the first half for 65.7% as San Diego State made just 11 field goals of their 31 attempts. Moore started off the night with five quick points in the Huskies’ 12-2 run to open up tonight’s contest as she connected for her 38th career game in double figure points, finishing the night with 21 points and nine rebounds, while picking up 17 points and five rebounds in the first half. The sophomore also picked up six assists
The Huskies’ biggest lead of the first half came with 1:15 on the clock as freshman Tiffany Hayes (Lakeland, Fla.) made a nice move to the basket to put UConn up by 29 points to go into the locker room at the break with a 56-27 lead. Junior Tina Charles (Jamaica, N.Y.) was 5-for-8 from the floor for 11 points while Moore finished the half making 7-of-12.
UConn used a 14-0 run to begin the second half as Renee Montgomery (St. Albans, W. Va.) did not waste any time, knocking down a three pointer just 10 seconds into play. The Huskies outscored San Diego State 43-28 in the second frame, shooting 18-for-29 from the floor, including 4-for-6 from behind the arc. The Aztecs finished the game shooting 23-of-62 for 37.1%, led by Jene Morris with a team-high 17 points.
Hayes finished the game with a career-high 11 points and six rebounds while both Kalana Greene (St. Stephen, S.C.) and Montgomery finished with 13 points, respectively. Charles picked up her second consecutive double-figure game of the season with 17 points as she shot 8-for-12 from the field. Greene made her first 10 field goal attempts this season before committing her first miss in tonight’s game. Her 13 points marked her second game with double figure points this season and the 32nd of her career.
All 12 players saw action in tonight’s contest as 11 Huskies scored with five scoring in double figures. That effort marks the first time the Huskies have had five players post double-digit performances in back-to-back games since March 25 and 30 of the 2007-08 season. The Huskies’ largest advantage of tonight’s contest came at the 7:29 mark of the second half as Hayes hit a three pointer to put UConn up by 52 at 92-40. UConn’s solid offensive performance led the team to 41-of-64 shooting for 64.1% while hitting on 7-of-12 from three point range.
UConn will take on Rhode Island on Saturday, Nov. 22 in a 1:00 p.m. match-up at the XL Center in Hartford, Conn.
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· Tonight’s game marked the first in a stretch of three over the next six days.
· UConn improves to 2-1 all-time vs. San Diego State and has won the last two.
· UConn moves to 2-0 for the fourth straight season and the 12th time in the last 13 seasons overall.
· UConn extends its home-court winning steak in the regular season to 26 straight.
· UConn has won 89 straight vs. non-ranked opponents.
· UConn owns a 10-game winning steak vs. non-conference opponents on its home court.
· UConn extends its home-court winning streak against non-ranked opponents to 215.
· UConn extends its overall winning steak in non-conference games to 17.
· UConn improves to 88-11 all-time at the XL Center and have won its last 12 in a row.
· UConn improves to a perfect 7-0 all-time against opponents from the Mountain West Conference.
· Maya Moore’s 21 points marked her second consecutive game with double-figure points and the 38th of her career. It is also her 15th career game of at least 20 points.
· Kalana Greene made her first 10 field goal attempts this season before committing her first miss.
· Renee Montgomery’s 13 points mark her second game with double-figure points this season and the 75th of her career.
· Tina Charles’ 17 points marked her second game with double-figure points this season and the 53rd of her career.
· Kalana Greene’s 13 ponts mark her second straight game with double-figure points this season and the 32nd of her career.
· Renee Montgomery’s 13 points moved her past Charde Houston (1,365 points) into 22nd place on the UConn career scoring list with her current total of 1,374 points. She trails Sue Bird (1,378 points) by four points for 21st place.
· Renee Montgomery has registered double-figure points in 12 consecutive games.
· Renee Montgomery made her 101st consecutive start, and the 110th of her career. Both of these are the longest active streaks in the nation.
· Tonight marked the 99th UConn women’s basketball game played at the XL Center in Hartford. The Huskies have an all-time mark of 88-11 after tonight’s win, which is the 12th straight at Hartford.
· Tiffany Hayes’ 11 points marked the first double-figure scoring game of her career.
· UConn had a total of five players score double-figure points for the second consecutive game. It marked the first time the Huskies have had five players post double-digit points in back-to-back games since March 25 & 30, 2008.
· UConn has made at least one three-point field goal in 220 consecutive games.
· UConn held San Diego State without a field goal until 15:28 of the first half.
· UConn ended the first half on a 13-4 run.
· UConn started the second half on a 27-4 run and scored 14 straight points.
University of Connecticut
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On the return of Kalana Greene to the lineup
“With every game that we play, Kalana looks a little more comfortable. I thought today, she had a good rhythm, she had a good comfort level. She wasn’t in a hurry, she wasn’t a step slow. She was just into a good groove for herself and I think that’s what happens when you start to feel a little more comfortable and you know what you can do. I’m thrilled for her, because I know she desperately wanted this to happen sooner rather than later. I think if she keeps making those perimeter jumpers, she is just going to add something we didn’t have last year after she got hurt.”
How much has the improvement of Kalana Greene and Tina Charles as passers allowed you to do more things?
“I think those two things to hand and hand. The first thing for someone like Tina Charles is that you have to be good enough in the low post that someone wants to double you. So, once that happens, the next step is to become adroit at passing the ball out of the post. That’s a skill that I think every post player has to have, but first you have to be able to score, and I think that’s what happened with Tina. She’s converting more often on the offensive end, so she drawing more double teams and she’s not in a hurry and she’s finding people that are open. Kalana, again, if you’re not sure with the ball you tend to stare at the ball and the floor and you tend to miss guys. Now, she’s getting more comfortable with the ball than she had been last season, she’s able to see things and make plays.”
What adjustments offensively did you make between Sunday’s game against Georgia Tech and tonight’s game?
“We had practice on Tuesday, and we came up with a plan as a staff and said, ‘How about if after we pass it we move,’ and they went ‘Oh.’ So, Tuesday and Wednesday it was really enlightening for them that when they passed it and moved, good things started to happen. Today was completely different than Sunday, and it wasn’t anything revolutionary, it wasn’t anything that we racked our brains to come up with. It was pretty simple. We didn’t play basketball at all Sunday for whatever reason – I don’t know why. Today, we were in a real good rhythm offensively. We could score almost every time down the floor, and a lot of that had to do with the fact that we were intent on being aggressive and making the next play. Hopefully that keeps getting better.”
Personally, were you frustrated with your early foul trouble?
“Yes, that definitely got to me. I had one bad one where I tried to hedge and I reached in. The other one I thought I had my hands straight up but I made contact with my body.”
What was really good today about the offense?
I would say that we just played off what the defense was doing. We weren’t just exactly trying to run specific plays we were just playing to what the defense gave us and I think we handled it well.”
Talk about what Tiffany Hayes adds to the team
“Tiffany brings special qualities and you know something good is going to happen. First, she can drive to the basket, knock down the three, plus she is quick and athletic. She is not afraid to make mistakes. She plays hard and you have to love that. She goes out there and tries to make a shot or drive to the hoop. She sparks us, for example there was one time where are offense could not score and she hit a three to get our offense going.”
On the success of her shooting so far this season”
“I’m guess I’m playing with a little bit more confidence each game. I’m feeling better. I feel like I don’t even think about my knee, like I’ve never been injured. I’m just ready to get back out there. I was excited because this time last year, it was a month later or so, I didn’t play San Diego State. I watched the game, but it was the day I had surgery. It was kind of exciting. I didn’t know how they were and I was just kind of anxious to get out there and play.”
Do you feel you’ve developed your shot to where you’re happy with it?
“Yeah, I mean there’s always room for improvement, but I don’t go out there saying I need to hit a jump shot at all times. I know I need to hit them, but I’m not saying I need to shoot them. If the defense is not going to let me shoot, then I’ll cut to the basketball. If they’re not letting me cut and then give me open shots, I got to take it. It’s not like I worked on my shot for so many years and I have to force them in. Whatever the defense gives me, I just have to pick them apart.”
San Diego State University
Head Coach Beth Burns
On the defense
“We have this saying that hard work beats talent when talent won’t work hard. So, when you pit great talent against people who weren’t working hard, I’m really disappointed. I apologized to Geno after the game, because I expect us to compete. As I prepared for this game watching last year’s game I knew our defense was so much better, but it was Christmas. It was a month forward. We were fortunate to win the two games that we did coming in because we haven’t guarded well. For the style that we aspire to play, if you have one person not doing what they are supposed to do when everybody else is extended, the result is what you saw tonight. We aren’t going to quit on what we do. We’ve have had some eclectic stuff and we need to get a set line up and rotation and I hope that helps. We’ve just got to go to work. Its November, we aren’t going to throw in the towel yet. ”
What do you tell the team about the positives from today?
“Well, we didn’t have many. The positives will be how we perform next week. We have four games next week and that’s what I told them. We have two days of practice for four games. What we do this weekend will really determine how our season goes because we are two and one and a week from Sunday we’re going to have four more games mixed in there against the likes of Iowa State, Hawaii at Hawaii and USD, which is a really big rivalry game for us. So we have to get it straight quick and we’ll find out what we’re made of. We have two days to fix stuff and we’ll do the best we can and play as hard as we can.”
Junior Guard Quenese Davis
What did you learn from this game?
“We definitely learned that we need to work on our defense when we get back home. We are going to take this as a learning experience. We just didn’t play defense tonight.”
How did UConn’s 12-0 drive to open the second half affect you?
“We didn’t give up. We just tried to keep playing. When they hit just about every shot they put up, it’s kind of hard. We tried to fight back but we couldn’t get back in it.”
Sophomore Center Paris Johnson
On your defense
“It is a big lesson. Last year we came in way stronger in our defense. We rotated well; we talked well. Coming to UConn and having their stadium filled and the noise, that’s probably what is was, but we have been in places like this. New Mexico has a big arena with a lot of fans. Our defense needs to get picked up. We worked hard on our defense all week. I just couldn’t put my finger on what was going on, on the court. We just needed to rotate more and talk more.”
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