The UConn Huskies would probably prefer to keep their regular-season rivalry with the Duke Blue Devils alive beyond Monday, a point slammed home by their 83-52 blowout win over the 10th-ranked team in the country.
UConn led 33-26 at the half but outscored the Blue Devils 50-26 over the final 20 minutes. The Huskies also forced Duke into 22 turnovers with high-pressure defense that led to a 17-2 advantage on fast-break points.
After the game, coach Geno Auriemma was asked if turning to the press helps when his team is trailing.
"I think on occasion," he said, via the team's website. "I don’t know that we can do it all the time against everybody, but in certain situations. We try to find in our practices when that is and against who… I was really happy with the effort today. It was pretty taxing on our guys. I don’t think the effort was ever less than what I wanted it to be. You open yourself up to free throws, and everything else that goes with it, but I think in the end it was worth it."
All five starters scored in double figures and junior guard Moriah Jefferson led the way with 18 points. Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis and Breanna Stewart went for 14 apiece, Morgan Tuck added 13, and freshman Kia Nurse had 11.
Jefferson's performance follows a career-high 24-point effort against SMU over the weekend.
"I'm kind of feeling like I'm a little bit on a streak, so I might as well shoot it," she said, according to the Associated Press.
The Huskies are now 10-1 on the season. They play again on New Year's Eve, when they travel to AAC opponent ECU.