Updated BIG EAST Notes
Six league teams were in action on Tuesday and all three home teams each were victorious. Two of the games were decided by two points. UConn beat Villanova 76-43, DePaul edged Pittsburgh 57-55 and Georgetown slipped past Cincinnati 54-52.
No. 3/2 Connecticut (19-1, 6-1 BIG EAST) won its seventh in a row and improved its top-ranked defense. The Huskies entered the game No. 1 nationally holding opponents to just 46.7 ppg. UConn held a 44-17 lead at halftime. Junior Stefanie Dolson had a game-high 20 points, while sophomore Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis added 19 points, including five 3-pointers. Dolson shot 8-of-11 from the field, including a 3-pointer. She leads the country in shooting at 61-percent.
''We played really good defense and we didn't score for seven minutes and it didn't hurt us,'' said UConn head coach Geno Auriemma. ''Because, again, our defense was there.''
Senior Jesse Carey had nine points, all on 3-pointers, to lead Villanova (16-4, 5-2 BIG EAST), which was picked to finish 10th in the BIG EAST, but lost for just the fourth time this season. Villanova shot 7-of-28 from 3-point range (25-percent) and had just six turnovers. The Wildcats lead the nation averaging just 11 turnovers per game.
In the Windy City, DePaul (16-5, 5-2 BIG EAST) won its third in a row and improved to 12-1 at home this season. Sophomore Brittany Hrynko drove the length of the court and hit the winning shot with four seconds to go to lead the Blue Demons. Hrynko finished with 19 points and played the full 40 minutes.
“The shot itself, that’s Brittany’s talent,” DePaul head coach Doug Bruno said. “I’m proud she had the resolve and moxie to make that shot. But if we had made some free throws down the stretch and played with a little more basketball wisdom, we’re walking away with a 10 or 12-point win.”
DePaul shot a season-low 7-of-16 from the free throw line (44-percent). Senior Katherine Harry also had an impressive game with 12 points and 14 rebounds for her seventh double-double of the year.
Pittsburgh (9-11, 0-7 BIG EAST) went on an 8-1 run late in the game to tie it at 55-55 with 13 seconds left, but it was not enough. Junior Asia Logan led the Panthers with 15 points. The game featured 11 ties and 10 lead changes. Pitt last won a BIG EAST Conference game on Feb. 15, 2011.
In Washington, D.C., Georgetown (13-8, 4-4 BIG EAST) held off the Cincinnati (8-12, 0-7 BIG EAST) and evened its league record at 4-4. The game featured four ties and eight lead changes with neither team leading by more than six points.
Georgetown senior Sugar Rodgers, who leads the league in scoring at 23.7 ppg, had 17 points shooting 6-of-23 from the field. She ranks second nationally in scoring.
Sophomore Alyesha Lovett had a career-high 17 points to lead Cincinnati. The Bearcats held Georgetown without a field goal over the final 5:44, but could not pull out the win. Cincinnati also committed 17 turnovers that converted into 21 points for the Hoyas.
13/12 LOUISVILLE AT USF 7:00 p.m.
ST. JOHN’S AT PROVIDENCE 7:00 p.m.
SETON HALL AT RV/22 SYRACUSE 7:00 p.m.
RUTGERS AT MARQUETTE 8:00 p.m.
Material from interviews, school websites, the Associated Press wire service as well as league and team sources was used in this report.