January 17, 2022

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South Carolina Gamecocks women’s basketball team tops UConn Huskies, solidifies hold on No. 1

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The South Carolina women’s basketball staff solidified its maintain on the No. 1 ranking and obtained its initially victory in a 1 vs. 2 matchup on Monday, defeating UConn 73-57 in the Struggle 4 Atlantis championship match in the Bahamas.

The noon ET activity Monday pushed The Affiliated Push poll voting back again a working day, so the Gamecocks will keep on being in the major place when the rankings appear out Tuesday. Poll voting is generally on Sunday with the rankings unveiled on Monday, but the Gamecocks-Huskies showdown made it well worth waiting around for.

“I am tremendous proud,” Gamecocks coach Dawn Staley reported. “They get the job done really hard, they think in each and every other. We have obtained to get improved mentally that’s the separation from very good to terrific groups.”

Maybe, but the Gamecocks — specially in the 2nd fifty percent — looked really wonderful presently. They held the Huskies scoreless for the closing five minutes of the sport and outscored UConn 40-21 in the next fifty percent, which include 16-3 in the fourth quarter.

“We knew specifically what we experienced to do, particularly on the defensive aspect of the ball,” Staley mentioned. “We experienced to disrupt. UConn is a nicely-oiled machine. If you let them to just run their stuff, they have built teams glance silly.”

Junior article player Aliyah Boston led South Carolina with 22 details and 15 rebounds. Gamecocks guards Zia Cooke and Destanni Henderson mixed for 32 points, 7 helps and 8 steals.

“It is time for Aliyah Boston to be the dominant player she is,” Staley explained of the countrywide player of the 12 months prospect.

In the meantime, a further prospect for that honor, sophomore guard Paige Bueckers, led UConn with 19 details, but only 6 arrived in the second fifty percent.

“I will not feel she was any great today, to be trustworthy with you,” UConn mentor Geno Auriemma claimed. “The very first 50 %, there ended up a whole lot of excellent times that she experienced. But for the overall 2nd fifty percent, I you should not think she was much of a aspect. I really don’t know regardless of whether she just obtained exhausted, she was worn down. But it was not the very same Paige we’re applied to viewing.

“Some of that comes from, we will need another guard out there that can make outdoors pictures. She just didn’t get enough enable.”

South Carolina, which started the time in the No. 1 location, had been -4 in previous No. 1 vs. No. 2 video games, with a few of those losses to UConn. This also was the Gamecocks’ second victory in opposition to the Huskies, who direct the sequence 9-2.

UConn has performed in far more 1-2 matchups than any application, women’s or men’s, in higher education hoops record. The Huskies are now 22-4 in those video games. But in a matchup of two Remaining 4 teams from previous year, South Carolina showed the most poise down the extend.

The Gamecocks ended up down by as much as 13 details in the initially 50 %, but they came out on fireplace soon after the split and took regulate of the game in the third quarter, when they outscored the Huskies 24-18.

South Carolina led 57-54 after three quarters. UConn currently being outscored by 13 in the fourth quarter tied for the Huskies’ worst place differential in the ultimate period because women’s basketball went to quarters in 2015-16. They were outscored by Baylor 19-6 in the fourth quarter of a January 2020 decline to the Bears.

Monday, the Huskies had been 1-of-10 from the industry in the fourth quarter.

“The mixture of their defensive pressure in the fourth quarter and our incapability to cope with that stress is essentially the recreation,” Auriemma mentioned. “For 30 minutes, I assumed we were truly good. The very last 10 minutes, they ended up better than us … defensively, offensively, rebounding the ball. They’re the much better workforce than us right now. A minor further.”

South Carolina won the rebounding struggle 41-26, and it experienced 14 turnovers to UConn’s 19.

“We will not want any slippage, we really don’t want lapses,” Staley said of what the Gamecocks just take absent from the victory. “We get a likelihood to perform them all over again. So I’m absolutely sure there will be a whole lot of changes made on each sides of the ball for them and for us.

“But I am just delighted for our players who have been determined more than enough to just focus and gain the basketball recreation.”

The rematch among the groups will be at South Carolina on Jan. 27 (ESPN, 7 p.m. ET).

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