Well, that was exciting.
The UConn women have now won 80-games in a row, but none was harder earned than tonight's. The Huskies barely escaped a Baylor team that seemed built to exploit UConn's weaknesses and pushed the team to its limit. UConn only shot 32 percent from the field and was an atrocious 5-23 from behind the arc.
Luckily for the Huskies, they have the best player in the game, Maya Moore, who scored 30 points and single-handedly carried the Huskies through an otherwise abysmal first half. And when Baylor started to shut down Moore in the second half, UConn got bailed out by freshman Bria Hartley, who only scored 9 points, but seemed to hit every big shot the Huskies needed in crunch time.
For their part, Baylor relied on all-world center Britney Griner, who was the engine behind an impressive run that brought Baylor back from 15 down in the second half and handed the Bears a seemingly-commanding lead heading into the final minutes.
The Huskies prevailed though, helped along by a costly misstep by Baylor coach Kim Mulkey. Coming out of a timeout with 8 seconds left, Mulkey called timeout to reset her defense. UConn had the ball and two seconds on the shot clock. UConn didn't wind up scoring, but Baylor was neither able to set up a play nor get a shot off before the final buzzer sounded.
Tonight's win leaves the women just 8 short of the record 88-straight won by the UCLA men's team in the 1970's.
Tonight UConn played their worst possible game against their nightmare opponent -- and still won. There still is a good chance that this Husky team might lose, especially with a game at No. 3 Stanford coming up at the end of December, but getting by Baylor has to make UConn fans feel very good about this team's chances of continuing its win streak for a very long time..