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UConn women’s basketball blasts Notre Dame, 81-57

The Huskies dominated an overmatched Notre Dame squad.

Ian Bethune/The UConn Blog

In one of the most lopsided victories in the history of their rivalry, UConn women’s basketball rolled over the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, 81-57. The No. 4 Huskies improve to 8-0 on the season while the Irish drop to 5-6.

Notre Dame’s lack of offensive firepower showed early as the Fighting Irish didn’t make their first shot until the 6:25 mark of the first quarter. While UConn deserved some credit for defending well, much of it was just Notre Dame missing open shots.

They began to exploit the Husky defense by getting inside on backdoor cuts and give-and-go’s. At the half, 22 of Notre Dame’s 25 points came in the key and 36 of its final 57 came down low. But UConn maintained a healthy lead thanks to an offense that was hitting on all cylinders.

The Huskies moved the ball well, with assists on nine of 12 baskets in the first quarter, and ended the half with 52 points — its highest total through 20 minutes this season.

After an 11-0 run to close the first half, UConn opened the second half with seven straight points to extend the lead out past 30 points. Notre Dame made a small push late with an 8-0 run to start the fourth quarter but never threatened further than that.

UConn dominated on the glass with 48-32 margin and cleaned up the offense boards, with 16 offensive rebounds that led to 21 second-chance points. Four players reached double-figures and they had assists on 18 of 30 baskets.

Megan Walker continued her rise towards All-American recognition with a dominant 26 point, 13 rebound performance. At times, Notre Dame had no answer for the junior, who went 10-of-18 from the field. Olivia Nelson-Ododa was a force down low as well with 16 points, 10 rebounds and three blocks.

Crystal Dangerfield made her return after missing the previous two games with a back injury and played 33 minutes. She finished with 10 points, six rebounds and five assists, though she did look rusty at times with four turnovers.

Next, UConn will have a week off for finals before returning to action on Dec. 16 at DePaul.