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UConn Women’s Basketball Rolls Past Duquesne, 104-52

Kia Nurse scores 24 points in her homecoming game in Toronto.

Ian Bethune/The UConn Blog

Despite playing in a different country, the UConn women’s basketball team was as consistent as ever as they cruised to a 104-52 victory over Duquesne in Kia Nurse’s homecoming game in Toronto.

Nurse looked comfortable back in her home country, scoring 24 points on 9-11 shooting with five rebounds and two assists at the Mattamy Athletic Center. The Hamilton, Ontario native hit four of her six 3-point attempts and received a loud ovation when she left the court for good with 3:15 left in the fourth quarter.

After getting rid of some jitters early on, Nurse hit her first 3-pointer of the day with four minutes left in the first quarter to go up 18-7 and UConn would finish the first quarter up 25-9.

UConn would start the second quarter on a 7-0 run and pull away from there, with Duquesne failing to reach double figures until Julijana Vojinovic hit a pair of free throws to make it 32-11 with 7:26 left in the first half.

As the second quarter wound down, Nurse beat the buzzer and banked in a jump shot to give the Huskies a 54-22 lead at the half.

While Nurse was solid in her return to Canada, junior Katie Lou Samuelson stole the show, burying three 3-pointers and scoring 14 of her game-high 33 points in the second quarter on her way to shooting 8-9 from the 3-point line.

After halftime, Samuelson and Nurse stayed hot from deep and bombarded Duquesne with a barrage of 3-pointers. The duo combined to make six of their seven 3-point attempts to stretch the lead to as much as 42 points in the quarter before cruising to the 52-point victory, their largest margin of victory this season.

Napheesa Collier and Gabby Williams also reached double figures with 15 points and 12 points respectively for the Huskies, while Duquesne saw two scorers - Libby Bazelak (14 points) and Chassidy Omogrosso (15) - reach double digits. Every UConn player saw time except for Batouly Camara and Megan Walker, who was cleared to play but is still recovering from the flu.

The Huskies are off until the 28th from practice and they’ll return to action on New Year’s Eve to open American Athletic Conference play against Memphis at 1:30 p.m. at the XL Center.


Geno Auriemma Postgame:

Gabby Williams, Katie Lou Samuelson, Kia Nurse Postgame: