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A blog on UConn women's basketball.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Mosqueda-Lewis lights it up for UConn

Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis wasn't quite sure what to expect as she played a game in her native California for just the second time during her brilliant collegiate career. She was certainly not anticipating a performance for the ages.

Mosqueda-Lewis tied Maya Moore's single-game UConn mark with 10 3-pointers and the Huskies matched the team mark with 18 3-pointers. Both records were set in a 2009 game against Syracuse.

"We definitely haven't been shooting in practice," said Mosqueda-Lewis, who moved into fourth place on UConn's career 3-point list. "When one person misses it kind of turns into a snowball effect and I think it also has to do with good shooters like Stewie (Breanna Stewart) and me taking responsibility after we miss a couple, we have to make one."

The starting backcourt of Saniya Chong and Moriah Jefferson combined to go 7 of 8 from 3-point range while Stewart made the Huskies' other trey.

However, the star of the night was Mosqueda-Lewis who had close to 25 family members and friends in the stands directly behind the UConn bench. Many of them were wearing blue t-shirts with the No. 23 on them and a few signs could be seen from her most loyal of supporters.

"It was special to do it in front of my family and friends," said Mosqueda-Lewis, who finished with 30 points, three rebounds, three steals and two assists.

What exactly did Mosqueda-Lewis do?
"She put on a show for everyone," Stewart said.

UC Davis played a zone knowing it couldn't match up inside with the Huskies' post duo of Stewart and Kiah Stokes. The result was  giving up plenty of open looks on the perimeter.

"If they miss a couple of those shots, we can keep it interesting for a while," UC Davis coach Jennifer Gross said. "I thought we were playing well and we were down 12. They kept pushing that margin out just a little bit more. The problem is you miss one or two shots and they are still missing them. it is really pick your poison, there were kids who we were challenging to shot and we were packing it in the paint a little bit more. They stepped up and make every one. We went into the game knowing Kaleena could shoot the but yet she continued to get open looks."

In Auriemma's eyes the most impressive aspect of Mosqueda-Lewis' game wasn't the 10 made 3-pointers but that she came out with an aggressive mentality on offense.

"K is as good a shooter as I have ever seen at any level," Auriemma said. "I get disappointed when she doesn't make open shots and I get disapopinted when she passes up open shots because I just think when you are that gifted, that skilled, you should be looking to do what she did tonight. She was looking for those opportunities.

"I think as you get older you automatically become a better shooter you mentally don't understand what goes into being a good shooter. You mentally let it go, you don't even know why it is going in or not going in. When it is not going in when you are a freshman, you begin to pout like Kaleena did at times because it is such a big part of who you are. When it doesn't go in you start to mentally, you get out of your comfort zone. As you get older and when you become a senior you don't let one miss affect you, what you did is you build on makes so when those first three go in, the next five are going to go in."

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