UConn Can't See Over The Trees

By Jeff Lippman - April 06, 2008


TAMPA, Fla. - How many people out there thought Stanford would be up 40-33 at halftime? Come on, be honest.

Bottom line, Connecticut is having major trouble with Stanford's size. The front court duo of Kayla Pedersen - who has a game-high 10 points on 5-of-9 shooting - and Jayne Appel has been sensational in stopping Connecticut's power game.

The Huskies have been limited to jumpers and, frankly, aren't hitting them.

UConn is shooting just 39 percent compared to Stanford's 42 and the Huskies are only 2-of-9 from long range. Renee Montgomery is struggling especially, only having scored four points on 1-of-6 shooting.

The junior guard has missed all three threes she's taken and on the last was visibly upset after the ball clanked off the rim. Things aren't going Connecticut's way right now.

Of course, Candice Wiggins got it all started by scoring the first four points for Stanford. The senior Wade Trophy winner has nine points at half to go with a game-high seven rebounds.

Leading the way for the Huskies was center Tina Charles with seven points. Connecticut tied Stanford in the first half in rebounding with 22. But the rebounding is the only thing the Huskies are doing well inside. Charles, although leading the way for UConn, needs to be much more physical.

Maya Moore didn't score until the seven minute mark but finished the half with six points. She also was 0-for-3 from deep, though.

One person shining at the moment for the Cardinal is junior backup forward Jillian Harmon, who has seven points and has shown major toughness inside against UConn's Charles and Charde Houston.

Pedersen, however, has been most impressive to me for Stanford. The freshman 6-foot-4 center has such a sweet shot she should be called "Sweet P." She's got the jumper from the top of the key down to a science.

Connecticut needs to come out firing on all cylinders in the second half to get back into this game. The Cardinal look highly spirited and are not going away. But we are talking about a Husky team that was down big at half against North Carolina in Storrs, Ct., and rallied to win that game in the second half.

Geno will need that and more in this one. Stanford will not roll over. That much is evident.

Posted by Jeff Lippman at 07:52 PM on April 06, 2008
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