The Huskies were playing their first game following a 10-day layoff for final semester exams and it took a few minutes for the rust to wear off as the first half featured four ties and five lead changes.
The win moves Connecticut to a perfect 7-0 to open the season for the third consecutive year and the 11th time in the last 13 seasons overall. Penn State falls to 5-5 following the loss and has dropped each of its last six meetings with the Huskies dating back to 1989. Connecticut has now won each of its last 93 games against unranked opponents and extended its non-conference regular season winning streak to 22 games.
Penn State (5-5) led by as many as four points in the first half before Connecticut out-scored the Lady Lions 16-2 over the final 8:24 of the opening frame to claim the lead for good and go into intermission with a 34-21 advantage.
Connecticut increased its lead to 16 points at 58-42 with 10:24 remaining before Penn State made a push to get to within eight points at 69-61 with three minutes remaining.
The Huskies slammed the door on the Lady Lions upset bid with a run of 8-2 to close out the contest and account for the final 77-63 margin.
The victory improves UConn to 2-0 all-time on the floor at Madison Square Garden and moved the Huskies record when playing as the nations No. 1 ranked team in the Associated Press poll to 200-11 all-time.
Joining Charles in double-figures for Connecticut was sophomore Maya Moore (Lawrenceville, Ga.) with 21 and senior Renee Montgomery (St. Albans, W. Va.) who finished with 13 for her 17th straight double-digit scoring effort.
Tyra Grant led a trio of Penn State players in double-figure points with 26.
The Huskies continue their current five-game road swing with a trip to Cancun, Mexico, for the Caribbean Classic where they will play three games over a four-day span against Washington (Dec. 18), Northern Colorado (Dec. 19) and Florida State (Dec. 21).
UConns games in Cancun against Northern Colorado on Dec. 19 (7:00 p.m. ET) and Florida State on Dec. 21 (4:30 p.m. ET) will be televised live on CPTV (Connecticut Public Television).
All three of the Huskies games at the Caribbean Classic next week can be heard live on the UConn Radio Network and via the internet at UConnHuskies.com.
- Todays victory moves UConn to a perfect 7-0 on the season for the third straight season and the 11th in the last 13 seasons overall.
- Today marked UConn first game since Dec. 3 following a 10-day layoff for final exam.
- UConn improves to 2-0 all-time in games played at Madison Square Garden.
- Todays contest marked UConns first to open a five-game roadtrip.
- Caroline Doty missed her first 3-point attempt to snap her UConn record run of 10 consecutive makes from beyond the 3-point arc.
- UConn improves to 6-3 all-time vs. Penn State and has won each of the last six meetings.
- UConn moves to 200-11 all-time when playing as the nations No. 1 ranked team in the Associated Press Poll.
- UConn moves to 156-54 all-time in the month of December and have won its last 18 games in the month.
- UConn moves to 20-8 all-time against opponents from the Big Ten Conference.
- UConn extends its winning streak against to 93 straight games.
- UConn ups its mark to 228-3 against non-ranked opponents dating back to Jan. 31, 1999.
- UConn has won its last 22 regular season games against non-conference opponents.
- UConn improves to 67-18 in nationally-televised games since 2001-02 and a perfect 2-0 this season.
- Tina Charles 29 points marked her seventh straight game with double-figure points and 58 times in her career.
- Maya Moores 21 points marked her seventh straight game with double-figure points and the 43rd in her 45 game career.
- Renee Montgomerys 13 points marked her 17th straight game with double-figure points.
- Tina Charles 29 points marked her season high and the 10th time in her career that she has registered at least 20 points.
- Tina Charles 18 rebounds marked a season-best effort and were one shy of her career-best of 19.
- Tina Charles 29 points and 18 rebounds marked her second double-double this season and the 27th of her career.