(David Butler II)
(David Butler II)

NEW YORK (AP) Indiana failed to have a double-digit scorer and still rebounded from its first loss of the season to beat UConn 57-54 on Tuesday night at Madison Square Garden.

The Hoosiers (9-1) won their first eight games under coach Archie Miller and were on the brink of cracking the Top 25 until a 20-point loss at Wisconsin earned them only a few votes.

Beating a so-so UConn team may not earn IU any style points but it gutted out a win down the stretch in front of a wild Huskies crowd. UConn gave the Garden an old Big East feel in the Jimmy V Classic.

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Apr 5, 2019; Tampa, FL, USA; UConn Huskies guard Megan Walker (3) controls the ball as Notre Dame Fighting Irish forward Jessica Shepard (32) defends during the first half in the semifinals of the women's Final Four of the 2019 NCAA Tournament at Amalie Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 5, 2019; Tampa, FL, USA; UConn Huskies guard Megan Walker (3) controls the ball as Notre Dame Fighting Irish forward Jessica Shepard (32) defends during the first half in the semifinals of the women's Final Four of the 2019 NCAA Tournament at Amalie Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

STORRS, Conn. (AP) Megan Walker scored 26 points and pulled down 13 rebounds Sunday to lead No. 4 UConn to an 81-57 rout of rival Notre Dame.

Walker hit 10 of her 18 shots for the Huskies (8-0) .

Olivia Nelson-Ododa added 16 points and 10 rebounds. Christyn Williams had 12 points and Crystal Dangerfield, who returned to the Huskies starting lineup after missing two games with back spasms, chipped in with 10.

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SOUTH ORANGE, N.J. (AP) Megan Walker scored 29 points and Aubrey Griffin added 25 as No. 4 UConn recovered from a slow start to defeat Seton Hall 92-78 on Thursday night.

The Huskies (7-0) trailed 28-19 after a fast-paced first quarter. They bounced back to beat the Pirates (5-4) for the 31st straight time dating to 1995.

UConn also got 12 points from Christyn Williams and 10 from Molly Bent.

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UConn led Iona by just one point at halftime on Wednesday night, but the Huskies dominated in the second half en route to an 80-62 victory over the Gaels.

Forward Josh Carlton led the way for the Huskies, finishing with 19 points, 12 rebounds, and four blocks.

After the game, Carlton, and UConn head coach Dan Hurley, spoke about the way he was able to play with force.

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STORRS, Conn (AP) Josh Carlton scored 19 points and pulled down 12 rebounds, both season highs, to lead UConn over Iona 80-62 on Wednesday night.

Christian Vital had 16 points and Tyler Polley added 14 for the Huskies (6-2), who have won three straight and five of their last six.

Alterique Gilbert scored 12 points and had 10 of UConn's 18 assists. That trio of guards combined to hit eight of their 15 attempts from 3-point range.

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Second-year head coach Dan Hurley sounded impressed with what he saw from his bench Sunday in UConn's 64-40 win over Maine.

As the Huskies (5-2) ran away from the Black Bears (2-5) before 7,129 at XL Center in Hartford, Connecticut, they did so behind their second unit, headlined by the backup guard duo sophomore Brendan Adams and freshman James Bouknight.

The two combined for 26 of UConn's 29 bench points, splitting the total between Bouknight's team-high 15 and Adams' 11 to fuel the Huskies' 33-16 rout in the second half.

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HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) Freshman James Bouknight, playing his first home game, scored 15 points and UConn pulled away in the second half to beat Maine 64-40 on Sunday.

Alterique Gilbert added 13 points and Tyler Polley had 12 for the Huskies (5-2), who were playing in Connecticut for the first time in two weeks.

Andrew Fleming led all scorers with 16 points for Maine (2-5), which shot just 35% from the floor and made just six baskets in the second half.

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Mar 11, 2019; Uncasville, CT, USA; UConn Huskies forward Olivia Nelson-Ododa (20) returns up court against the UCF Knights during the second half in the women's American Conference Tournament at Mohegan Sun Arena. UConn defeated UCF 66-45. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)
Mar 11, 2019; Uncasville, CT, USA; UConn Huskies forward Olivia Nelson-Ododa (20) returns up court against the UCF Knights during the second half in the women's American Conference Tournament at Mohegan Sun Arena. UConn defeated UCF 66-45. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)

DAYTON, Ohio (AP) Megan Walker scored 23 points and matched her career high with 12 rebounds Tuesday night, and No. 4 UConn beat Dayton 75-37 without injured point guard Crystal Dangerfield.

The Huskies (6-0) took control with their outside shooting in their first visit to University of Dayton Arena, completing a two-game trip to Ohio that sapped their depth.

Dangerfield had a season-high 23 points during a 73-62 win at Ohio State on Sunday but was sidelined against the Flyers because of back spasms. Senior guard Molly Bent got her first career start and had four points with two assists.

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After the UConn women's basketball team remained undefeated on the 2019-20 season with Sunday's 73-62 win over Ohio State, head coach Geno Auriemma was honest about how the Huskies are still finding an identity.

To beat the physical Buckeyes (3-2), UConn needed a variety of production over the fourth quarters before 8,909 on hand at Value City Arena in Columbus, Ohio.

The Huskies (5-0) got what they needed from three of their top players as senior guard Crystal Dangerfield (23), sophomore guard Cristyn Williams (20) and junior forward Megan Walker (19) stepped up to combine for 62 points.

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) Crystal Dangerfield scored 23 points and Christyn Williams added 20 to lead No. 4 UConn over Ohio State 73-62 on Sunday. 

Megan Walker added 19 for the Huskies (5-0), who had a rare tight game with the Buckeyes.

No team led by more than single digits for the first 36:47 of the game, but UConn went on a 9-4 run to go up 67-56 with 2:53 to go. A Kierstan Bell 3, quick steal and layup by Jacy Sheldon made it a six-point game with 2:20 to play.

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 (David Butler II)
(David Butler II)

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) Brendan Adams had a career-high 20 points and Christian Vital added 16 points and 10 rebounds as UConn held off Buffalo 79-68 at the Charleston Classic on Thursday night.

The win by the Huskies (3-1) sets up a Big East past, present and future matchup with No. 18 Xavier on Friday night as former league heavyweight UConn faces current Big East beast in the Musketeers with the winner advancing the tournament finals.

The schools will soon be league rivals as UConn has announced a return to the Big East.

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Jan 31, 2019; Louisville, KY, USA; Connecticut Huskies head coach Geno Auriemma reacts during the second half against the Louisville Cardinals at KFC Yum! Center. Louisville defeated Connecticut 78-69. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports (Jamie Rhodes)
Jan 31, 2019; Louisville, KY, USA; Connecticut Huskies head coach Geno Auriemma reacts during the second half against the Louisville Cardinals at KFC Yum! Center. Louisville defeated Connecticut 78-69. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports (Jamie Rhodes)

Headlined by the No. 1 overall prospect in the cycle, the UConn women's basketball team signed five members for the Huskies' 2020 recruiting class Wednesday.

UConn announced letters of intent from Minnetonka (Minn.) Hopkins five-star point guard Paige Bueckers (No. 1 overall, No. 1 point guard), Baltimore Roland Park Country five-star wing Mir McLean (No. 21 overall, No. 3 wing), Ontario (Canada) Crestwood Secondary five-star wing Aaliyah Edwards (No. 26 overall, No. 4 wing), Haverhill (Mass.) Bradford Christian Academy three-star forward Piath Gabriel and Zagreb, Croatia, three-star point guard Nika Muhl.

Prospect rankings are from the 2020 HoopGurlz espnW 100 recruiting rankings, prepared by Dan Olson of Collegiate Girls Basketball Report.

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Jan 27, 2018; Storrs, CT, USA; Connecticut Huskies guard/forward Megan Walker (3) on the court against the Tulane Green Wave in the second half at Gampel Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)
Jan 27, 2018; Storrs, CT, USA; Connecticut Huskies guard/forward Megan Walker (3) on the court against the Tulane Green Wave in the second half at Gampel Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) Megan Walker scored 15 of her 19 points in the first half and No. 4 UConn blew out Virginia 83-44 on Tuesday night.

Christyn Williams added 17 points for the Huskies (4-0), who extended their home winning streak to 96 games.

Kyla Irwin had a career-high 13 points and freshman Anna Makarut had her best game as a Husky with 10.

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UConn sophomore forward Olivia Nelson-Ododa talked to SNY's Maria Marino after the Huskies beat Temple 83-54.

"I'm just happy that we were able to come out and play more of our UConn style of basketball this game, and we were able to show that," Nelson-Ododa said.

She led the team with 15 points, 10 rebounds, and four assists in the win. Despite her strong stats, Nelson-Ododa knows how she can still improve.

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Nov 17, 2019; Storrs, CT, USA; Connecticut Huskies guard Christian Vital (1) prepares to shoot the ball past Florida Gators guard Scottie Lewis (23) in the first half at Harry A. Gampel Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)
Nov 17, 2019; Storrs, CT, USA; Connecticut Huskies guard Christian Vital (1) prepares to shoot the ball past Florida Gators guard Scottie Lewis (23) in the first half at Harry A. Gampel Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)

STORRS, Conn. (AP) Christian Vital scored 15 points and made a key steal at the end of the game as UConn upset No. 15 Florida 62-59 on Sunday.

Tyler Polley also scored 15 points and Josh Carlton added 13 for the Huskies (2-1) who led by five points at halftime and never trailed after intermission.

A layup by Florida's Keyontae Johnson with just over a minute to go cut the lead to 60-59, but those would be the last points the Gators scored.

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) Olivia Nelson-Ododa had a career-high 15 points, 10 rebounds and five blocks to lead No. 4 UConn to an 83-54 win over Temple on Sunday in the American Athletic Conference opener for both teams.

Christyn Williams scored 19 points and Megan Walker added 15 for the Huskies.

The game was being played so early in the schedule because UConn has four non-conference games against No. 1 Oregon, No. 2 Baylor, No. 6 South Carolina and Tennessee after Jan. 1 as well as an exhibition game against the U.S. national team on Jan.27. That made finding dates to play during the normal part of the conference schedule difficult. >> Read More

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Before the Lady Huskies took on Vanderbilt on the road Wednesday, UConn head coach Geno Auriemma didn't hold back his feelings about the failed transfer waiver of Evina Westbrook

Up until this point, Auriemma has been quiet on the subject, as the NCAA was still doing work to see if the Tennessee transfer was allowed immediate eligibility for this season. But, after the NCAA rejected the appeal from the Huskies, Auriemma let it all out.

He claimed that Westbrook's situation -- one he couldn't get into details on -- should have shown the NCAA that a transfer was needed when she joined the school last offseason. However, the NCAA didn't view things that why, and Auriemma cant' see why. 

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Mar 7, 2019; Storrs, CT, USA; Connecticut Huskies guard Christian Vital (1) reacts after his basket against Temple Owls guard Shizz Alston Jr. (10) in the first half at Gampel Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)
Mar 7, 2019; Storrs, CT, USA; Connecticut Huskies guard Christian Vital (1) reacts after his basket against Temple Owls guard Shizz Alston Jr. (10) in the first half at Gampel Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)

STORRS, Conn. (AP) Ryan Daly scored 30 points as Saint Joseph's held off UConn 96-87 on Wednesday night.

Rahim Moore added 22 points and Myles Douglas had 18 for the Hawks (2-1), who led by as many as 27-points in the first half and never trailed.

Christian Vital had 26 points for UConn (1-1) and Alterique Gilbert added 22 for the Huskies, who cut the deficit to three points in the second half before running out of gas.

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Jan 31, 2019; Louisville, KY, USA; Connecticut Huskies guard/forward Megan Walker (3) shoots against the Louisville Cardinals during the first half at KFC Yum! Center. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports (Jamie Rhodes)
Jan 31, 2019; Louisville, KY, USA; Connecticut Huskies guard/forward Megan Walker (3) shoots against the Louisville Cardinals during the first half at KFC Yum! Center. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports (Jamie Rhodes)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) Megan Walker scored 25 points, and the fourth-ranked UConn Huskies beat Vanderbilt 64-51 Wednesday night in the program's first game at Memorial Gym since 1992.

The Huskies (2-0) now have won six straight against Vanderbilt (2-1) after dropping the first two between these programs. This was much closer than last year when UConn beat Vanderbilt 80-42 at Mohegan Sun Arena.

Coach Geno Auriemma hadn't brought his Huskies to Memorial Gym since March 1992 when Vandy ended UConn's run in the second round of the NCAA Tournament a year after the first of its now 20 record Final Four berths. Even with former Vanderbilt guard Jasmine Lister now an Auriemma assistant, the reason for this visit was senior guard Crystal Dangerfield.

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Head coach Geno Auriemma has been around UConn long enough to know what to expect, but he was unsure what to make of how his 2019-20 team opened the season.

The slate started Sunday at Harry A. Gampel Pavilion in Storrs, Connecticut, with the No. 5 Huskies' 72-61 win over California -- the victory, ultimately, an expected result.

Between the production -- sophomore guard Christyn Williams led with 24 points, junior forward Megan Walker added 21 and senior guard Crystal Dangerfield dropped 14 -- Auriemma received just about what he thought his experienced trio would provide.

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STORRS, Conn. (AP) UConn coach Geno Auriemma said he's had teams play worse in opening games.

He's certainly had some play a lot better.

Christyn Williams scored 24 points and the fifth-ranked Huskies began their season Sunday with a closer-than-expected 72-61 win over California.

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The UConn men's basketball team got their season started on the right foot with a 89-67 win over Sacred Heart, but things got off to a rocky start.

The Huskies had a slow start and led by just three at halftime, before turning up the intensity in the second half.

"Just played with more urgency," head coach Dan Hurley said after the game. "After the three seasons that we're coming off of here at UConn, we should never put ourselves in a mental position where we're complacent. I think our guys read too much into the score of the Providence-Sacred Heart game."

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STORRS, Conn. (AP) Josh Carlton scored 14 of his 18 points in the second half to help UConn break open what had been a close game and beat Sacred Heart 89-67 on Friday night.

Christian Vital added 15 of his 17 points after intermission for UConn, which won its season opener for third straight year and 19th time in 20 seasons.

Carlton opened the second half with four straight baskets in the paint, part of a 14-2 run that turned a three-point halftime lead into a 54-39 advantage. Vital capped the run with a pair of 3-pointers that put the Huskies in control.

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Mar 7, 2019; Storrs, CT, USA; Connecticut Huskies head coach Dan Hurley watches from the sideline as they take on the Temple Owls in the second half at Gampel Pavilion. Temple defeated UConn 78-71. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)
Mar 7, 2019; Storrs, CT, USA; Connecticut Huskies head coach Dan Hurley watches from the sideline as they take on the Temple Owls in the second half at Gampel Pavilion. Temple defeated UConn 78-71. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)

UConn netted its first commitment of the 2020 recruiting class Wednesday and it was a big one.

The Huskies received a pledge from four-star Andre Jackson of Albany, New York, who gives second-year head coach Dan Hurley recruiting momentum before the 2019-20 season.

The 6-foot-6, 195-pound Jackson is the 247Sports Composite's No. 70 overall prospect, No. 16 small forward and No. 3 player in New York for the current recruiting cycle. 

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Thursday was a momentous day for UConn, as the school was welcomed back as a member of the Big East, though they won't officially make the move until 2020.

Big East commissioner Val Ackerman called UConn's move out of the American Athletic Conference back "an opportunity that we simply couldn't pass up", and men's basketball coach Dan Hurley echoed those thoughts.

"The incredible history and tradition of UConn basketball and the Big East Conference, they're intertwined," Hurley told SNY. "Four National Championships the last 20-plus years on the men's side, obviously the success Geno [Auriemma] has had, and it's all been intertwined."

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UConn made the move back into the Big East Conference, as the Board of Trustees voted to withdraw their school from the American Athletic Conference on Wednesday. 

On Thursday, it was made official.

Big East commissioner Val Ackerman addressed the large crowd at Madison Square Garden to welcome back the Huskies to the Big East. She noted this being "an opportunity that we simply couldn't pass up," and with what UConn has accomplished in the conference, this was a match made in heaven once again...

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A Big East logo on the court at the Wells Fargo Center (Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports)
A Big East logo on the court at the Wells Fargo Center (Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports)

The UConn Board of Trustees voted to withdraw the school from the American Athletic Conference and accept an invitation to the Big East Conference on Wednesday.

UConn, which left the Big East in 2013 to join the AAC, will return beginning in the 2020-21 academic year.

Big East presidents approved UConn's invitation on a conference call on Monday. 

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The Big East logo on the court at The Pavilion (Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports)
The Big East logo on the court at The Pavilion (Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports)

UConn is reportedly headed back to the Big East, and the school reportedly cleared one hurdle on Monday.

Big East presidents approved UConn's invitation on a conference call on Monday, CBS Sports' Matt Norlander reports, and UConn's Board of Trustees is reportedly expected to vote and approve the move on Wednesday. A formal announcement could come Thursday.

UConn, which left the Big East in 2013 to join the American Athletic Conference, would return to the Big East for the 2020-21 academic year.

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Connecticut Huskies guard Jalen Adams reacts with guard Christian Vital after a play against the Cornell Big Red in the second half at XL Center. (David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports)
Connecticut Huskies guard Jalen Adams reacts with guard Christian Vital after a play against the Cornell Big Red in the second half at XL Center. (David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports)

UConn men's basketball star guard Jalen Adams signed with the New Orleans Pelicans after the NBA draft, the team announced.

Adams averaged 16.9 points, 4.0 rebounds and 3.4 assists in 26 games as a senior, his final season cut short due to a sprained MCL.

As a junior, Adams averaged 18.1 points, 4.2 rebounds and 4.7 assists.

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 (Charles LeClaire)
(Charles LeClaire)

A UConn legend in Swin Cash has reportedly secured a senior front-office position with the New Orleans Pelicans, according to ESPN's Zach Lowe.

Lowe has the official title for Cash being the vice president of basketball operations and team development, which has the duties of guiding player development and scouting among others. 

The Pelicans have been revamping their front office, with new president of basketball operations David Griffin leading the way. Griffin has also brought in Trajan Langdon to be the team's new GM. 

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UConn Huskies guard Katie Lou Samuelson reacts after a play against the Louisville Cardinals during the second half in the championship game of the Albany regional in the women's 2019 NCAA tournament at Times Union Center. (Rich Barnes/USA TODAY Sports)
UConn Huskies guard Katie Lou Samuelson reacts after a play against the Louisville Cardinals during the second half in the championship game of the Albany regional in the women's 2019 NCAA tournament at Times Union Center. (Rich Barnes/USA TODAY Sports)

After finishing their UConn careers, UConn greats Katie Lou Samuelson and Napheesa Collier are officially leaving Storrs to begin their WNBA careers.

Samuelson was drafted fourth by the Chicago Sky, while Collier was picked sixth by the Minnesota Lynx at Wednesday's WNBA draft.

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The UConn Huskies may have lost in the Final Four, but the impact Katie Lou Samuelson and Napheesa Collier had will be remembered for years to come.

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UConn head coach Dan Hurley is establishing good culture after his first full season, and has the Huskies back on track to greatness.

 

 

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The University of Connecticut Lady Huskies fell to the Notre Dame Fighting Irish for the second consecutive season in the NCAA Tournament semifinal, 81-76, in Tampa Bay. 


Things to know about Friday's game...

1) With one minute left to play, the Huskies were down just one point. And though they got some good looks at taking the lead, it was Brianna Turner for the Irish that came up with big blocks to keep Notre Dame's lead. She is Notre Dame's blocks leader in team history, and it came up big tonight. She also had 15 points and 14 rebounds...

Tags: University of Notre Dame
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The UConn Huskies are in their 12th consecutive Final Four appearance, and head coach Geno Auriemma knows it's going to be a battle against defending champion Notre Dame.

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The University of Connecticut Lady Huskies know this moment all too well. They're just looking for a different result this time. 

UConn traveled to Tampa, FL for the Final Four, and lo and behold they're facing Notre Dame once again with the winner heading to the National Championship. Husky fans will remember what happened the past two seasons -- two losses in the semifinal in the game's final seconds. 

Last season, it came at the hands of Notre Dame, which is why UConn has been in the film room watching exactly what went wrong in that game so it doesn't happen this time around...

Tags: Katie Lou Samuelson
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For the fourth time in her career, Katie Lou Samuelson is headed to the Final Four. 

UConn defeated Louisville, 80-73, on Friday for the program's 12th consecutive semifinal appearance. Samuleson poured in 29 points in the winning effort. 

"I think just understanding that i needed to step up bigger than i did on Friday and understanding that if i didn't this could be the end of the road for me," Samuelson said. "There was a lot on the line and we wanted to get back to the Final Four." 

Tags: Katie Lou Samuelson
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Katie Lou Samuleson led the UConn Lady Huskies to a 80-73 Elite Eight win over Louisville to advance to the FInal Four on Sunday afternoon.


Things to know about Sunday's game...

1) The Huskies owned an 11-point lead in the fourth quarter, but they were close to blowing it. With just 26.6 seconds left on the clock, the Huskies saw their lead cut to two. Luckily, though, they hit their free throws. Samuelson drained two to make it 77-73, and when Asia Durr from Louisville had a chance to move it back to a two-point lead for UConn, she missed them both. Napheese Collier, then, got fouled and hit her free throws to pull away a bit. 

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Geno Auriemma and the UConn women's basketball team are back in the NCAA Tournament's Elite Eight for a remarkable 14th straight year, but they face a tall task on Sunday as the No. 2-seeded Huskies face No. 1 Louisville in the Albany Regional final. UConn lost to Louisville back on Jan. 31, 78-69.

Does that result have any impact on Sunday's matchup?

"I think every team understands that what happens in the regular season, that happened last year almost," Auriemma told SNY's Maria Marino. "This is a whole new year. Postseason play is completely different than regular-season play. We've certainly been there before where we won a couple of games in the regular season and you lose to the same team in the postseason. I don't think what happened in that first game is gonna have a lot of bearing on what happens in this game."

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The UConn Lady Huskies were tested by the UCLA Bruins on Friday night, but they picked it up for a 69-61 win to advance in the NCAA Tournament >> Box Score

Things to know about tonight's game...

1) Napheesa Collier led the way for UConn with 25 points, 10 boards, and four blocks on the defensive end. 

Tags: Katie Lou Samuelson, Napheesa Collier
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As expected, the University of Connecticut Lady Huskiesd waltzed their way through the first and second rounds of the NCAA Tournament. 

Now, they find themselves in Albany, NY for the Sweet 16 to face off against sixth-seeded UCLA. It's still survive and advance for UConn, but head coach Geno Auriemma has an interesting take on how he looks at the tournament.

"I think when you get here it's a new tournament," Auriemma told SNY's Maria Marino. "The way we treat the NCAA Tournament is it's three little tournaments, you know. So the first one's over, that was last weekend. Now you start a new one."

Auriemma also discussed what the Bruins bring to the table, and how UConn's game against Buffalo helped prepare them for this game...

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Napheesa Collier scored 27 points and grabbed 16 rebounds as UConn held off 10th seeded Buffalo 84-72 on Sunday night to move into the Sweet 16 for a 26th consecutive season.

Katie Lou Samuelson and freshman Christyn Williams each added 17 points for the No. 2 seed Huskies (33-2).

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STORRS -- Napheesa Collier and Katie Lou Samuelson had quite the introduction to Gampel Pavilion as freshmen. In their first regular season game, UConn played archrival Notre Dame in front of a sold-out crowd.

"That's one of the games I remember the crowd being crazy," Samuelson said. "One of the few games in my career I actually remember the crowd and that was definitely one of them, especially because it was one of the big games."

Collier didn't remember the game as much as her feelings leading up to it.

"I remember how nervous I was. Just being in this environment with our fans," she said. "Playing in Gampel, it was a lot."

Tags: Crystal Dangerfield, Katie Lou Samuelson, Napheesa Collier
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STORRS, Conn. (AP) UConn wanted to make a statement after failing to get a No. 1 seed in this year's NCAA Tournament.

Message sent.

Napheesa Collier scored 23 points and UConn, in the unusual position of being a No. 2 seed, got off to its usual NCAA tournament start with a 110-61 rout of 15th-seeded Towson on Friday night.

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For the first time since 2006, the UConn women's basketball team enters the NCAA Tournament as a No. 2 seed.

Geno Auriemma, Napheesa Collier and Katie Lou Samuelson talk about that and more ahead of their Friday matchup against No. 15 Towson in the first round.

Tags: Katie Lou Samuelson, Napheesa Collier
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Connecticut Huskies guard/forward Katie Lou Samuelson and forward Napheesa Collier react after a play against the South Carolina Gamecocks in the second half at XL Center (David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports)
Connecticut Huskies guard/forward Katie Lou Samuelson and forward Napheesa Collier react after a play against the South Carolina Gamecocks in the second half at XL Center (David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports)

STORRS -- Napheesa Collier and Katie Lou Samuelson had a perfect start to their college career, literally. As freshmen, the Huskies went undefeated and won the program's 11th national championship. 

Since then, the two classmates have done plenty of winning -- eight conference titles, helping build a 111-game win streak and reaching three straight Final Fours -- but they're missing one thing: a second national championship.

Fair or not, careers are judged at UConn by how many rings a player wins. 

Tags: Katie Lou Samuelson, Napheesa Collier
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Mar 2, 2019; Storrs, CT, USA; UConn Huskies guard Katie Lou Samuelson (33) drives the basket against the Houston Cougars in the first half at Gampel Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)
Mar 2, 2019; Storrs, CT, USA; UConn Huskies guard Katie Lou Samuelson (33) drives the basket against the Houston Cougars in the first half at Gampel Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)

STORRS -- UConn women's basketball senior Katie Lou Samuelson will return for the NCAA Tournament after missing the previous four games due to a back injury suffered on Senior Day on March 2.

"I'm ready to go. I'm excited to get playing again," Samuelson announced.

While Samuelson admitted she isn't back to 100 percent just yet, she will be once the Huskies tip-off in the first round against 15-seed Towson on Friday.

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Katie Lou Samuelson is expected to return to 2-seed UConn for its NCAA tournament opener on Friday against 15-seed Towson, head coach Geno Auriemma told SNY.tv's Justine Ward.

Samuelson, who has averaged 18.0 points and 6.7 rebounds this season, has missed the Huskies' last four games, including the entire American Athletic Conference tournament, due to a back injury.

She last played March 2 vs. Houston, when she scored 11 points in 17:48 of playing time.

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Nearly four hours before the scheduled women's NCAA Tournament bracket reveal on ESPN, the network accidentally leaked the entire bracket on Monday during the 3 p.m. Eastern hour on ESPNU.

ESPN acknowledged its error in a statement. 

"In working with the NCAA to prepare for tonight's Women's Selection Special we received the bracket, similar to years past. In the midst of our preparation, the bracket was mistakenly posted on ESPNU," it said in the statement. "We deeply regret the error and extend our apology to the NCAA and the women's basketball community. We will conduct a thorough review of our process to ensure it doesn't happen in the future. We will now broadcast the full bracket at 5 p.m. ET on ESPN2, and the regularly-scheduled show on ESPN at 7 p.m."

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