Saturday, November 18th, 2017

Aggressive guard play helps No. 6 Stanford topple No. 1 UConn in OT, 88-86

Published on November 18, 2014

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Fans rush the court after No. 6 Stanford's victory over No. 1 UConn.

Fans rush the court after No. 6 Stanford’s victory over No. 1 UConn.

STANFORD, Calif. – No. 6 Stanford (2-0) toppled No. 1 UConn, 88-86, in an overtime contest Monday night in front a full crowd at Maples Pavilion. The key to the game was guard play according to UConn coach Geno Auriemma.

“Their guards outplayed our guards,” was his succinct postgame recap.

Sophomore guard Lili Thompson led the Cardinal with 24 points plus four rebounds. Senior point guard Amber Orrange scored 17 points including the three-point dagger that sent the game into overtime. She also pulled down four rebounds and dished out four assists. Senior forward Bonnie Samuelson was also in double figures for the Cardinal with 14 points. Freshman Kaylee Johnson pulled down 14 rebounds and scored eight points.

Stanford fans rushed the court to celebrate the victory. Cardinal head coach Tara VanDerveer quipped, “I think people got their money’s worth.” The game reached fans afar as it was broadcast on ESPN 2.

The victory was the second time VanDerveer’s Stanford teams ended a UConn-winning streak at home. The Cardinal snapped the Huskies’ NCAA record 90-game unbeaten run in 2010.

“We didn’t just lose to a team that doesn’t have any good players,” said Auriemma. “Sometimes, because of who we are, the biggest story is that we lost, not that Stanford played great and won, and that would be unfortunate. That would be a disservice to Stanford, but that’s the reality, that’s the world that we’re in….We lost to a really good team, a better than team people would probably give them credit for.”

While UConn (1-1) led for much of the game, they were never able to distance themselves by more than 10, a margin reached at 6:32 in the second half. They only led by two at halftime, 40-38. Stanford’s defense and guard play never wavered during the contest and at the regulation buzzer, the Huskies found themselves with at least five more minutes to play after Orrange launched a three-point shot with 1.4 seconds to go. Junior forward Breanna Stewart had a chance to put UConn in the winning column at the buzzer but her three-point attempt failed.

“I was surprisingly calm when I took the shot,” said Orrange about sending the game into overtime.

Senior forward Bonnie Samuelson’s free throws put the Cardinal over the top in the extra period, sealing the victory and snapping defending national champion UConn’s win streak at 47. She discussed the team’s mentality this season.

“I think it just shows that we’re very determined this year, we’re not just willing to be written off.”

UConn, on the other hand, appeared hesistant and disorganized at the end of the game.

“It seemed like there was a lot of disconnect on the court,” said Stewart. “It’s up and down, our chemistry.”

The Huskies had four players in double figures led by Stewart who scored 23 points and pulled down 10 rebounds. Saniya Chong finished with 20 points and rebounds. Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis had 12 points plus six rebounds while Morgan Tuck added 11 points and four rebounds.

UConn returns home to host Creighton on Sunday. Stanford hosts No. 10 Texas on Thursday.


 

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