For UConn, it's a breeze on opening night in Paradise
St. Thomas, Virgin Islands - UConn used a balanced offense and stellar defense to earn an easy victory.
Breanna Stewart scored 20 points while Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis and Morgan Tuck each had 16 to help No. 2 UConn rout Wake Forest 95-34 in the opening game of the Paradise Jam on Thursday night.
UConn (3-0) dominated from the start, scoring the game's first 12 points and carrying a 45-12 lead into halftime. The Huskies held the Demon Deacons to just four field goals in the first 20 minutes. It took 7 minutes for Wake Forest to hit its first basket and the Demon Deacons missed their last 15 shots from the field in the first half.
"It's hard to complain about the way we played tonight, especially in the first half. The defensive intensity was really good for the entire game and we forced a lot of bad shots," UConn coach Geno Auriemma said.
While Wake Forest couldn't make a basket, UConn was hitting almost everything.
Stefanie Dolson made her first career 3-pointer in the first half and finished with 11 points. The Huskies finished the game shooting 69 percent from the field.
"Stefanie and Stewie are difficult to guard," Auriemma said. "They work hard and put that together with a couple of guys that can make 3s and when we're playing like that we're hard to play against."
Asia Williams scored 10 to lead Wake Forest (2-2), which scored the first two baskets of the second half but could get no closer. They shot just 22 percent from the field.
"I give all the credit to UConn," Wake Forest coach Jen Hoover said. "They are so diverse and they score in so many different ways. Part of the growing process for us is that we have to step up to that challenge and play as physical and strong as the other team. I think we got a lesson in that."
The Huskies will play Marist today (8:15 p.m., SNY) while Wake Forest will face Purdue.
UConn junior guard Bria Hartley played in her first game of the season after missing the first two with a sprained left ankle. She had eight points in 15 minutes.
"It was exciting, good to be back on the court again," Hartley said. "Be on the court with my teammates instead of sitting on the sideline. It's hard coming back so when you're used to playing a certain way. I'm working on getting back."
Auriemma was happy with his point guard's first game.
"I think she did great," he said. "It's hard to sit out that much and practice two days and come out and play. Little by little she'll get back to her old self. You can see some things today she brings to the team."
MOST VIEWED MEDIA
MOST DISCUSSED STORIES