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The Women’s Beat with Bob Joyce – Shoring Things Up

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Bria Hartley vs. SMU, Feb. 4, 2014. (Bob Stowell/UConn)

Bria Hartley vs. SMU, Feb. 4, 2014. (Bob Stowell/UConn)

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Feb 25 Dallas – A week from today, the regular season will be over…Tonight’s game at SMU is the final game in February. As we turn the page to March, it’ becomes “winning time.” Regular Season Title, Tournament Title, Final Four, National Championship. The first two don’t guarantee anything to get the latter two..But right now, Geno Auriemma’s team has to shore things up, get Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis back and begin it’s the final push for title #9..

Other than the two seniors, the remaining Huskies did not play to Coach’s expectations in the first 20 minutes in Houston Saturday. And he made that loud and clear at halftime. They then went out and shot 20-25 in the 2nd half and took care of business. The same challenge will be ahead of them tonight at SMU, a team they beat by 61 3 weeks ago. Sure the AAC is a much weaker conference than the old Big East, but that shouldn’t mean a thing when you play at UConn. The standards are high as are the expectations. The challenge is to push yourself to a level or two that a player would never expect to reach can become possible if you listen and learn from the best staff in women’s college basketball.

Back to the senior’s..as Stefanie Dolson & Bria Hartley get ready for Senior Day, they are playing their best, most consistent basketball of their careers. Bria has scored in double figures the last 12 games..Averaging 20 points per game while shooting a robust 53% and 47% from 3pt range..She’s peaking at the right time, having cracked the top 10 in scoring. And Stef ? Well, just steady eddie each and every game. Just what Geno needs from her. But now the big question ? Is this team better than the team that won it all last season ?? No, certainly not without KML in the lineup and certainly not as deep as last season with Morgan Tuck’s season ending knee surgery. The margin for error is paper thin. And we’ll get a good indication of just how ready the Huskies are when they visit Louisville Monday in front of at least 16,000 at the KFC Yum ! Center then a week later in the AAC Tournament.

The news on KML is encouraging as she’s past the two week mark of her mono. Thursday the team should have another update on weather or not she gets the green light to resume practice. Remember, with mono, ZERO activity for two weeks at least. Meaning whatever game shape Kaleena was getting herself into, has to start all over again. It’s too bad she was just starting to get back to being her old self game wise. It’s a good thing there is 12/13 days off before the NCAA’s begin March 23rd.

Our coverage tonight begins from a very nicely renovated Moody Coliseum begins at 7:30pm..Hope you can join us :)

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