Blogs > Elm City to Eagleville

A blog on UConn women's basketball.

Saturday, December 06, 2014

Different feel to this UConn/Notre Dame game

The last time UConn and Notre Dame squared off, a pair of undefeated teams met in the national championship game. The four seasons before that featured 15 games with eight being won by the Huskies and seven by the Fighting Irish.

Now comes the only regular-season meeting of the teams and with the contest coming on December 6, it is little more than a highly-anticipated litmus test for teams with relatively young rosters. The game will tip shortly after 3:15 and air on ESPN. With the football game kicking off at noon, the women's game will be broadcast on 96.5 FM instead of WTIC-1080.

"It is not an easy game," UConn coach Geno Auriemma said. "I am excited about it. I am looking forward to it. I think this is going to be the kind of game, I love games where even if you play well, you could lose. Those games are kind of exciting. It makes you kind of pay attention to a whole bunch of things."

This is the front end of a home and home series between the former Big East rivals. Next season the teams will meet in Connecticut. Auriemma said he's love for the series to continue, Notre Dame Muffet McGraw didn't seem opposed to that idea on a Wednesday conference call so we will see.

"It is a great game for women's basketball," McGraw said. "This game has a special place, more so because we played so much over the last few years now there is just one game, it is something everybody is looking forward to it."

There will be no lack of star power in the game. Both teams feature dynamic junior stars (Breanna Stewart and Jewell Loyd). While it will be enjoyable to see how the Huskies deal with Loyd and who ND attempts to slow down Stewart, the game's outcome will likely be determined by how the supporting casts of the national player of the year candidates perform.

Obviously the players can hardly wait for the game to get here.

"Just to be a part of something that exciting and that competitive, you don't really get to see that a lot in women's basketball but being able to be a part of this rivalry is something I feel like I am lucky," UConn senior forward Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis.

While UConn and Notre Dame will be battling in South Bend, two players who could be part of future games between the rivals will be on the court in Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

UConn Class of 2016 commit Crystal Dangerfield's Blackman (Tenn.) team will meet ND pledge and Erin Boley's Elizabethtown (Ky.) squad on two days of the We Back Pat Showcase.

Yesterday Dangerfield had 18 points as Blackman defeated Myers Park 56-39. I haven't seen complete statistics for that game but in the first four games of the season Dangerfield was averaging 17.8 points, 7.8 rebounds, 12 assists and 3.3 steals per game.


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