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UConn Women’s Basketball Bashes SMU, 80-36

The Huskies clinched the American Conference regular-season title with the win.

NCAA Womens Basketball: Connecticut at Southern Methodist Andrew Dieb-USA TODAY Sports

UConn women’s basketball’s destruction of SMU on Saturday night was a two-part act: Pre-first quarter media time-out and after.

Before, SMU controlled the game, showing the same spirit many teams do in their first minutes against the best team in the country. The Mustangs jumped out to a 5-0 lead and forced the Huskies to chase them for much of the first quarter. At the under-5 timeout with 3:27 left in the first quarter, SMU led 12-6.

By the time the Mustangs managed to score again, there were 15 seconds left in the second quarter and the Huskies had taken a 49-13 lead. Goodbye, SMU’s spirit.

UConn held SMU scoreless for 13:58 while ripping off an incredible 43-0 run. The Huskies gave up just one point in the second quarter. The second half was mostly a formality but the Huskies simply built their lead further.

When the final buzzer sounded, UConn came away with an 80-36 victory and clinched its fifth-consecutive American Conference Regular Season Championship.

After being benched during the Huskies’ 44-point drubbing of Tulane, freshmen Megan Walker and Mikayla Coombs both returned to the court. Walker contributed six points and four rebounds in 13 minutes of action.

Katie Lou Samuelson carried the scoring load for the Huskies, dropping 23 points while going 5-8 from three. Fellow junior Napheesa Collier chipped in 16 points along with six rebounds and four assists.

UConn was very efficient on offense, assisting on 27 of 31 baskets while only turning the ball over eight times.

Azura Stevens continues to perform well off the bench, notching a double-double with 14 points and 14 rebounds while adding three blocks and two steals.

The Huskies wrap up the regular season on Monday, when they will honor Kia Nurse and Gabby Williams on Senior Night against USF. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. at Gampel Pavilion.