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A blog on UConn women's basketball.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Blocked shots could be plentiful in UConn/BYU game

There are eight Division I women's basketball teams who blocked more than 200 shots this season and two of them will be squaring off in the Lincoln regional semifinal at 4:30.

UConn has 293 blocked shots, the second highest single-season total in NCAA Division I women's basketball history while BYU has blocked 214 shots.

The teams have done it in different ways.

UConn is led by the trio of Breanna Stewart, Kiah Stokes and Stefanie Dolson who have the No. 4, 9 and 11 best single-season blocked shots marks in UConn history. They have combined for 263 of the Huskies blocks this season.

BYU senior Jennifer Hamson has 141 of the Cougars' 214 blocks this season and at 6-foot-7, she will pose an intriguing challenge for the Huskies.

"I watched them play Nebraska, she definitely has long arms," Stokes said. "She takes up a lot of space which is very hard but we haven't seen enough film to see what she does."

Rutgers' Rachel Hollivay and Elizabeth Williams of Duke rank eighth and 13th on this season's blocked shot list and the Huskies have fared pretty well in the four combined games against the teams shooting 51.4 percent from the field and owning a plus 48 mark in points in the paint and is a plus 29 in second chance points.

"I do think you have to play to your strengths and you can't allow hat the defense is doing to take you away from what you are good," UConn coach Geno Auriemma said. "If you are good at driving the ball to the basket then you keep driving the ball to the basket within reason. If you are good at throwing the ball in the low post and score in the low post, you keep trying to do that and you just make a couple of adjustments to compensate for the fact that it is not a 6-2 post player, it is a 6-7 post player. We are not going to change our game plan that much because they have a really good post player."

Hamson knows the the 6-foot-5 Dolson, 6-foot-4 Stewart and 6-foot-3 Stokes could pose a challenge she hasn't faced this season.
"They might do a couple of things," Hamson said. "Things a lot of teams try to do is push me out and get me far away from the block. Other teams will double team; they will front me and have someone play behind as well. People have played me that way before so I'm just excited to see what they're going to do and just be ready for it."

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