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UConn Women’s Basketball Rebounds With Win At Houston, 81-61

Samuelson and Collier lead the Huskies to open conference play with a win.

Ian Bethune/The UConn Blog

UConn women’s basketball returned to their winning ways with a 20-point victory over the Houston Cougars to start conference play.

After posting their lowest shooting percentage in 20 years in the loss to Baylor, the Huskies shot 56 percent from the floor today — despite finishing 5-16 in the final quarter. However, UConn looked a little sloppy, committing a season high 18 turnovers which prevented the Huskies from achieving the larger margin of victory expected after a loss.

UConn’s seniors led the way with Katie Lou Samuelson scoring 19 points and Napheesa Collier adding 18. Both also had nine rebounds and three assists. Collier was 7-10 from the floor, and Samuelson shot 43 percent from beyond the arc after going just 2-10 against Baylor.

The Huskies started out trading baskets with Houston for most of the first quarter. UConn’s starters shared the ball well with all five having at least 4 points, but the Huskies ended the quarter up just 24-21.

UConn came out firing in the second quarter, quickly pulling away to a ten point lead. By the end of the half, the Huskies extended the lead to 21 points. They allowed Houston to score just nine points in the second quarter.

Napheesa Collier led the way for the Huskies at halftime with 13 points, 9 rebounds and 3 assists. Collier shot 63 percent from the floor in the first half, and UConn as a team shot 59 percent despite being 3-13 from beyond the arc.

In the third quarter the Huskies were a nearly perfect 8-9 from the floor. However, six turnovers by UConn and four offensive rebounds for Houston gave the Cougars double the shot opportunities. Nevertheless, UConn maintained the lead and finished the third quarter up by 25.

In the final quarter, the Huskies’ bench got some time. After the bench failed to score any points in their last three contests, Olivia Nelson-Ododa gave the Huskies good minutes in the win, finishing with three points, three rebounds and an assist in her nine minutes. Batouly Camara also added a bucket, and Mikayla Coombs had four boards.

Next up, UConn returns home to continue conference play against Cincinnati at Gampel Pavilion on Wednesday.