UConn women’s basketball held freshman guard Caroline Ducharme out of the team’s 75-56 win over Tennessee as a precautionary measure after she had taken a handful of shots to the head recently.
“The last two games that we played, she took a couple pretty solid hits,” Geno Auriemma said postgame. “She just wasn’t feeling really good yesterday and this morning when she woke up. Precautionary — it’s best to keep her out.”
“She doesn’t have a concussion,” he added later. “She knew she wasn’t ready. She knew she’s not right. So a couple days off will do her great.”
That doesn’t mean Ducharme was content to watch from the sidelines, though.
“She was pissed, man,” Auriemma said. She wanted to play so bad.”
The news came as a surprise for two reasons. UConn only announced Ducharme would not be available to play 45 minutes before tip-off and on Saturday, she participated in the portion of practice open to the media and spoke with reporters while Auriemma said everyone but Paige Bueckers would be ready to play.
“Everybody who’s available to play is available to play. We don’t have anybody for the first time — other than Paige — in a long time that’s not available,” he said.
Over the last 10 games, Ducharme has averaged a team-best 18.0 points per game along with 4.6 rebounds per game. Now, just three players — Aaliyah Edwards, Olivia Nelson-Ododa and Evina Westbrook — have not missed a game this season.