No. 2 UConn 70, Seton Hall 37
Anne Donovan is trying to change the culture at Seton Hall.
She’s seen modest gains over her first two years as coach.
”We’ve seen incremental improvements over last year,” Donovan
said. ”The kids we have are here and competitive and understand
what it’s going to take to turn the program around. We started the
season really strong, we’ve stumbled the last three games and this
team has a lot of fight left.”
It may take a while before she finds a way to end the Pirates’
long drought against Connecticut. Seton Hall lost to the
second-ranked Huskies 70-37 on Friday night for its 43rd loss in
the last 44 meetings with UConn.
”Moving forward, we’ve got to recruit,” Donovan said. ”We
have three post players and a walk-on. Recruiting is the name of
the game, it’s no secret. You got to recruit to compete in the Big
Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis, Tiffany Hayes and Caroline Doty had 15
points apiece for Connecticut, which next faces No. 1 Baylor on
The nation’s top two teams met last season in Hartford and UConn
came away with a one-point victory.
”I think we have a couple things we need to work on this week
in practice,” Mosqueda-Lewis said. ”We’ll be ready by that
Even with the lopsided score, Donovan was proud of the strong
support her team received from a spirited crowd. In the past, the
Huskies would have their own cheering contingent in New Jersey that
would drown out Pirates fans.
That wasn’t the case Friday night, with a loud student section
cheering on Seton Hall.
”We’re really happy about that,” Donovan said. ”We’ve had
better support from our own students. Overall our attendance has
been up. Slowly getting it done here. It’s a process, as we’re
working hard to build a program.”
Bu the Huskies (9-0, 1-0) quickly jumped on the Pirates in the
Big East opener for both schools. UConn hit four 3-pointers during
the opening burst, and Kiah Stokes capped the run with a layup 7
minutes into the game.
”We have better offensive players than they do,” UConn coach
Geno Auriemma said. ”For us it was getting the right people enough
shots in the beginning. Our pressure got us some shots.”
It took another minute before the Pirates (5-5, 0-1) got their
first points – two free throws by Alexis Brown. Seton Hall’s first
basket didn’t come until its 14th shot with 8:27 left in the first
half when Brittany Morris converted a three-point play. That made
it 30-5. The Pirates wouldn’t get within 22 the rest of the
”The press was the difference, you can’t prepare for
Connecticut’s pressure,” Donovan said. ”You can prepare with your
own players, but it doesn’t simulate what you see game time. The
difference of the game after that point was he took the press off.
We talked long and hard about taking care of the basketball. We
didn’t take care of that from the beginning to the end.”
UConn opened the season with eight straight home games and ran
through its opponents. The Huskies won by an average of 43 points,
including a 30-point rout of No. 8 Texas A&M on Tuesday
Playing its first road game did give UConn a little trouble in
the second half. After Bria Hartley’s layup with 15:34 left made it
55-23, the Huskies went more than 9 minutes without a point as
Seton Hall was able to cut the deficit to 23. Hartley finally ended
the drought with a lay-in with 6:25 remaining and the Huskies
cruised the rest of the way.
”There’s no excuse for the offensive players we have to go
without scoring, that’s inexcusable,” Auriemma said. ”We’re too
good to do that. We’re too good a team to throw it at the rim and
After taking a few days off for exams, the Huskies will travel
to Waco to face the Lady Bears before heading to the College of
The Huskies have won 56 straight Big East regular-season games.
It’s the fourth longest conference streak ever, trailing Texas,
which won 124 consecutive games in the Southwest Conference from
1981-1990. The Huskies have dominated the Pirates over the last 18
years, winning 43 of the last 44 meetings. The lone loss came on
Jan. 5, 1994.
Jasmine Crew scored 12 points for Seton Hall.
”It felt good to have the students come out and support us,”
Crew said. ”Hopefully they’ll continue to do that.”
The game featured the last two Olympic coaches. Donovan led the
U.S. team to gold in the 2008 Beijing Games, while Auriemma will
coach the Americans next year in London.
Doug Feinberg can be reached at