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Huskies Win Ninth Consecutive BIG EAST Crown

PISCATAWAY, NJ (Mar. 5, 2002) – BIG EAST Tournament Most Outstanding Player senior Asjha Jones (Piscataway, NJ) notched a double-double with 19 points and 11 rebounds as the No. 1 University of Connecticut women’s basketball team rolled to its ninth consecutive BIG EAST Tournament crown with a 96-54 win over No. 20 Boston College Tuesday night at the Louis Brown Athletic Center at Rutgers University. UConn now takes a perfect 33-0 record into the NCAA Tournament.

In a fast-paced first half, UConn sprinted to the early 14-5 lead, thanks to eight unanswered points between the 18:00 and 15:44 marks. The Huskies eventually ran up a 26-10 advantage before UConn committed two consecutive turnovers that allowed Boston College to narrow the margin to 30-18 with 7:27 remaining.

UConn then turned on the jets and reeled off a 15-5 run to push the lead to 22 points at 45-23 at the 1:58 mark. Jones had seven points in the Husky run and finished with 15 points and eight rebounds for the near double-double in the first stanza, as the Huskies took a 48-29 advantage to the break.

Jones also shot 7-for-8 from the floor in the first half, contributing to a scorching 66.7 first half field goal percentage for UConn.

Boston College shot 33.3 percent from the floor in the first half.

The Huskies started the second half with 12 unanswered points, the first six coming from senior Tamika Williams (Dayton, OH), to break open the game at 60-31 with 15:42 remaining.

UConn eventually registered its largest lead of the game at 96-50 on a layup by redshirt freshman Jessica Moore (Palmer, AK) before cruising to the 42-point margin of victory, the largest ever for a BIG EAST Tournament Final. The previous largest margin of victory was 36 points, set by the 1995 Huskies in an 85-49 win over Seton Hall.

Playing in their final BIG EAST Tournament game, UConn’s heralded senior class accounted for 63 of Connecticut’s 96 points. In addition to Jones, Williams, Sue Bird (Syosset, NY) and Swin Cash (McKeesport, PA) finished in double figures. Williams had 18 points while Bird recorded 16 points and seven assists. Cash finished with 10 points.

Sophomore Diana Taurasi added 14 points and eight assists.

For Boston College, who falls to 23-7, Nicole Conway and Jessalyn Deveny each had 12 points.

In addition to Jones, UConn’s other four starters - Cash, Bird, Williams and Taurasi - were named to the BIG EAST All-Tournament Team. Boston College’s Deveny rounded out the team.

Jones averaged 15 points and 8.3 rebounds in three contests in the tournament to garner the Most Outstanding Player honors, the first of her career.