NCAA women hoops: No. 1 UConn coasts past Southern, 95-39
By HANK KURZ Jr.
AP Sports Writer
NORFOLK, Va. ó Tina Charles and Connecticut cruised to a first round win and a 73rd straight victory.
Charles scored 22 points and Maya Moore added 21 to help No. 1 UConn beat Southern University 95-39 in the womenís NCAA tournament Sunday.
The senior center made her first nine shots for the Huskies (34-0), who have won every game during their winning streak by double digits. UConn hasnít lost since falling to Stanford in the 2008 national semifinals.
The Huskies, who arrived having won their last 10 first-round games by an average of nearly 49 points, led 52-29 at halftime and actually looked pretty sloppy at times. They had 12 turnovers, one more than the Jaguars, but easily dominated in every other category.
They fixed that in the second half by holding the Jaguars to 10 points, four field goals in 30 attempts and by making 67 percent of their shots.
Moore had 17 points and four 3-pointers by halftime, and the Huskies featured Charles scoring on the inside in a 21-2 spree to open the second half. The 6-foot-4 center scored eight points in the run, all from in close, and Caroline Doty hit a pair of 3-pointers.
That boosted their lead to 73-31 with 15 minutes left, and UConn coach Geno Auriemma emptied his bench shortly thereafter. Nine of the Huskiesí 11 players scored.
Tiffany Hayes and Kalana Greene scored 12 each for the Huskies, who shot 61.5 percent, outrebounded the Southwestern Athletic Conference champs 52-22 and limited them to 23.1 percent shooting. Connecticut also had a 22-4 advantage in points at the foul line.
Southern (23-9) actually led 2-0 after a short bank shot by Freda Allen, but the Huskies immediately asserted themselves with a 15-2 burst. After consecutive 3-pointers pulled the Jaguars within 20-12, Connecticut got points from seven players in an 18-4 run and coasted.
Hannah Kador led the Jaguars with 10 points, but shot just 3 for 22.
Southern, making its fourth appearance in the tournament and second in Old Dominionís Constant Center, had a similar experience the first time: a 96-27 loss to Duke in 2006.