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The Women’s Beat with Bob Joyce

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Test #1 Tonight – Remember, it’s still November and there is a lot of work to do. This evening at the XL Center it’s the Huskies and #5 Stanford in their 6th meeting in 48 months. First November meeting since the Paradise Jam in 2007 (we know what happened in Tampa the following April right ?)

The matchup with the Cardinal will be a tough one for the Huskies. They come at you with more size than any team they’ll play this season. No, they don’t have a 6’8″ Brittany Griner, but the Ogwumike sisters and depth off the bench is plenty against a small team by UConn standards. Meaning a) the Huskies must keep the rebounding numbers close and limit Stanford 2nd chance opportunities. b) The Post players ALL must contribute ! Not just Stephanie Dolson, but Heather Buck and Kia Stokes must have productive minutes. c) UConn needs to have some success with pressure on defense to get turnovers and score some easy points. and d) must shoot the ball well.. no worse than 45% tonight.

It’s funny I bring this up and somewhere Tiffany Hayes’ name isn’t mentioned. She’s been good the first two games as have others in balanced nights of scoring. But this is the first big test and historically speaking, Hayes’ numbers aren’t good against the Cardinal, especially the last two games.  She needs to be steady and given the chance, make a play or two when her teammates need her most.

Now Stanford has changed as well…The Lindy LaRoque – Toni Kokenis backcourt has been good so far, 6 freshman to blend into Tara Vander veers’ system and dealing with UConn at home will all be issues the Cardinal will experience tonight.

The series is tied 6-6, but the games outcome has never come down to the final minute. Perhaps tonight we get that. Win or loose, Kara and I are looking forward to a fun game tonight. We’ll see what needs work and what doesn’t when all is said and done.

Remember, if you’re going – tip is at 7:30 at the XL Center where tickets still remain. And if you  don’t get ESPNU,  you always have us with pregame at 7 and Husky Talk after the postgame on WTIC N/T 1080 & wtic.com !

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