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The Women’s Beat with Bob Joyce

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On the Thruway ! – Tomorrow it’s off to Central New York and a date with the Orange at the Carrier Dome for the 3rd ranked Huskies. Where one hopes Syracuse finally gets a crowd of more than a thousand for a women’s game. That’s right, the biggest crowd so far for Coach “Q’s” team is 972….Yes, 972. Please tell me why they play at the Dome again and not Manley Field House ?? I guess it can be an advantage shooting into a vast area of nothing behind the basket unlike the close wall at DePaul that we saw Saturday.

As for the Orange, they are the top rebounding team in the country at 49 per game. But they shoot just 37%. That has to improve greatly if Syracuse is to hang with the Huskies who have put together their best week of basketball to date over the last 4 games. UConn has really started to gel both offensively and defensively as conference play continues. And they’ll see just how much they’ve come when they might get a pretty good test Monday at #5 Duke. (note: I say MIGHT, it is an ACC team you know :) )

As you may know, no Caroline Doty tomorrow with the bone bruise. That’s good news. The look on her face when she first returned to the bench Saturday told another story. But the MRI showed all was well structure wise. Keleena Mosqueda-Lewis makes her first career start for the Huskies. And have you noticed stat wise, KML, Tiff and Bria are seperated by 2 points in total points this season ? KML 281, the other 2 have 279. And that’s a good thing for UConn this season whose defense is tops in the country. (Sorry Deb Antonelli, I know you like offense ) Their defense always seems to get lost as good as the Huskies have been on the other end. But that’s where the success begins.

I don’t know if you read DePaul Coach Doug Bruno’s comments about only 4 teams have a shot at the National Championship this season. (Baylor, ND, Stanford & UConn) And after what the Irish did to Tennessee last night, that might be the case. I didn’t see the game last night, but those who did and tweeted about it said that Pat Summitt is a shell of herself. And that’s very sad. So is the fact that 4, maybe 5 teams realistically have a chance to win it all as of right now. That’s BAD for Women’s College Basketball ! I would have thought by now that number would have increased. But as the season progresses, it looks as if it’s not the case. Granted, the number of good teams have seemingly increased, but the elite teams are still a thin list. And two of them play in the Big East (Go Figure !)

Make a note here, as I type this, DePaul is up 16 on Rutgers. Anna Martin has 18 (she had ZERO v UConn) and the Blue Demons are hitting 3’s at the RAC. Rutgers remember is ranked 11th (see what I mean ?) Hope you tune in from the Dome beginning at 6:30 tomorrow night..And let the hype of the Roman Numerial Classic #46 begin….Should be a lot of fun !!

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