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UConn women’s basketball destroys Xavier, 73-37

The Huskies earned a comfortable victory, but another star player suffered an injury.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: JAN 03 Women’s UConn at Butler Photo by Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

UConn women’s basketball finished its midwest road trip with a dominant victory, blasting the Xavier Musketeers, 73-37.

The Huskies were again without head coach Geno Auriemma, who stepped away from the team to focus on his health. Caroline Ducharme also missed her second straight game while in concussion protocol while Azzi Fudd remained sidelined with a right knee injury.

During the game, Aaliyah Edwards suffered a right foot injury after crashing into the sideline seating and did not play the second half.

“She tweaked her ankle a little bit when she went over and made the hustle play in the chairs,” Chris Dailey, serving as acting head coach, told SNY postgame. “It just wasn’t in the cards for her to play in the second half. We were up by a lot. Hopefully, it was just a tweak and we’ll know more tomorrow.”

With the team still shorthanded, a pair of UConn’s frontcourt pieces carried the load. Dorka Juhász recorded her fourth double-double in eight games in the first half en route to an 18-point, 17-rebound performance. Aubrey Griffin paced the Huskies with a team-high 19 points along with nine rebounds and three steals.

Lou Lopez Sénéchal continued her streak of reaching double-figures in every game, scoring 15 points. Nika Mühl finished with nine assists while Inês Bettencourt set career-highs with seven points and 22 minutes.

The Huskies crushed Xavier on the boards, holding a 56-27 edge.

After three straight fast starts, UConn couldn’t do anything right early on. The Huskies made just one of their first 10 shots and turned the ball over five times in the first five minutes. Luckily, Xavier had the same problem. The hosts missed its first seven attempts and only made one of its first 14.

The first media timeout proved to be the turning point for UConn. Out of the quick break, the Huskies scored on their next three possessions to spark an 8-0 run. The Musketeers broke it up with a 3-pointer but that would be their last basket of the first quarter. UConn closed the period on a 7-0 run and despite the slow start, it still led by 14 after 10 minutes.

The Huskies carried that momentum into the second quarter. They ripped off another 7-0 run and after Xavier again stopped it with a triple, UConn answered with another 10 straight points. At the midway point, the Huskies led by 31, which made the second half little more than a formality.

Even without Edwards over the final 20 minutes, UConn’s advantage never dipped below 30 points on its way to a 36-point win. Dailey improves to 17-0 as acting head coach for the Huskies.

Next, UConn will return home, where it’ll take on DePaul at Gampel Pavilion on Sunday.