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A blog on UConn women's basketball.

Wednesday, July 02, 2014

UConn recruiting targets lead U.S. into U17 quarterfinals

UConn Class of 2015 recruiting target Arike Ogunbowale and Asia Durr finished with 19 and 14 points respectively and combined to go 6 of 8 from 3-point range as the United States rolled to a 91-35 win over Mexico to advance into the quarterfinals at the FIBA U17 World Championship for Women.

UConn commit Katie Lou Samuelson finished with 10 points, her third double-digit scoring games in the tournament, and a team-high nine rebounds. Fellow UConn commit De'Janae Boykin added four points, five rebounds, two assists and a blocked shot. Jordan Holmes had 14 points, Kristine Anigwe had 12 points and UConn Class of 2016 recruiting target Sabrina Ionescu added six points, eight rebounds and five assists as the U.S. improved to 4-0 in the tournament.

Next up is a quarterfinal matchup against Canada, a 52-40 win over Brazil, on Friday. The game will tip at 3:15 p.m. in the Czech Republic which is 9:15 a.m. here in Connecticut.

Heading into the quarterfinals Samuelson is the tournament's sixth-leading scorer averaging 13.8 points per game and is second with 10 3-pointers made trailing only the 13 made by Canada's Bridget Carleton (a 2015 recruit who has committed to Iowa State). Durr is tied for ninth in scoring with an average of 12.8 points per game. Ionescu is in the top 10 in assists, steals and assist/turnover ratio while Ogunbowale leads all players with a 53.8 3-point percentage. Also, UConn recruiting target Lauren Cox is fifth in rebounding and fourth in blocked shots.

Here are quotes from Ionescu, Ogunbowale and Samuelson courtesy of USA Basketball

Sabrina Ionescu
On tonight's game:
I think we played really well. We executed everything that we were supposed to, and I think we came out with a lot of intensity and we reached our goals that we set before the game.

What were some of those goals for tonight?
We tried to play good defense and keep the score down, so I think us reaching all the goals that we set before the game helped us come together and play well as a team.

On the USA's 91 points:
Our shots were on, our post players finishing and I think collectively with our defense, it helped us produce offense. We played with great defensive intensity, and I think that helped us offensively.

What are your thoughts on facing Canada in the quarterfinals?
I think if we come out and do what we do, we will be fine.

Arike Ogunbowale
On tonight's game:
I think we played really well. We worked hard and kept our intensity up the whole game.

On the first quarter:
They are well-coached team. They played well, and they are scrappy. It was just a good game.

On the second quarter:
We just had to pick up our defensive intensity and play our game.

On the USA's 91 points:
We shared the ball a lot. We moved it around, executed our plays and played as a team.

On playing Canada:
We just have to play how we play. They are a great team, so we have to play like a great team as well.

Katie Lou Samuelson
On tonight's game:
I think we did well. We could have played better defense in the first half, but we stepped it up in the second half. All around, it was a good win.

On the first quarter:
They definitely came out playing hard, and we just needed to respond better. They played us really well and played to our weaknesses. We just had to adjust after that, and we brought it together.

What things was the team focused on in tonight's game?
We were trying to improve our man defense. We have been playing zone, and we definitely need to get better playing man defense, so we tried to step up and work on that. At times we played really well, and at times it was a little sloppy, but I think we are definitely getting better overall.

On the USA's 91 points:
A lot of people were in double-figures today, and we shared the ball really well. I think we are doing good at evenly contributing through the whole entire team, and that's the reason we scored so many points.

On playing Canada in the quarterfinals:
The last time I played Canada was in the gold-medal game (at the FIBA Americas U16 Championship), and they played us great. It was tied at halftime. We are going to have to play our best and be ready for them.

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