The UConn women’s basketball team will open the season in Columbus on November 12 in an early-season showcase. But instead of playing Ohio State like they were scheduled to, the Huskies will now take on a bitter rival in Stanford. The game is part of the Countdown to Columbus at Nationwide Arena, site of the 2018 Final Four.
UConn and Stanford have a long history. The last time the two teams faced off was on November 17, 2014 when the Cardinal took down the Huskies in overtime, 88-86. The loss ended a 47-game win streak, but UConn won the championship that year anyway and then kicked off a record 111-game win streak.
The two teams have met five times in the Final Four, including three straight times from 2008-2010. The Huskies have come out victorious four times, most notably in the 2010 National Championship when UConn claimed its seventh title.
However, the basketball court is the only place where the two teams compete. When Katie Lou Samuelson committed to the Huskies, she broke from her two sisters, Bonnie and Karlie, in not signing with Stanford.
While Bonnie was out of school by the time Katie Lou was a freshmen, she had a chance to play against her sister Karlie, then a senior, in the national title game last season. It seemed inevitable, with the Huskies 111-game win streak and all.
But Stanford’s chances were derailed when Karlie injured her foot in the first semifinal game as the Cardinal fell to eventual champion South Carolina.
Even without the Samuelson vs. Samuelson storyline, the season opener still projects to be one of the best games on the Huskies schedule. And who knows, the two teams may see each other again on the same court a few months later.