By Carl Adamec
Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis is known best as a scorer and that’s what she did best for the United States at the World University Games Tuesday.
The UConn All-American had 19 points, including eight in the final 37 seconds of the first half to break the game open, as Team USA improved to 2-0 in pool play with a 101-61 win over the Czech Republic in Kazan, Russia.
“I think we are getting a lot more comfortable with each other,” Mosqueda-Lewis said. “We are sharing the ball a lot better and just really getting a feel for the offense that Coach (Sherri) Coale put in.”
Mosqueda-Lewis was 8-for-14 from the floor and also had six rebounds. UConn guard Bria Hartley, who had a perfect shooting day in Monday’s opener against Mali, was just 1-for-8 and finished with seven points Tuesday.
Team USA scored the first eight points and led by 13 before Mosqueda-Lewis went on her run, capped by a conventional three-point play at the halftime buzzer, to make it 48-27 at the break. The Czech Republic got no closer.
Duke’s Tricia Liston added 14 points while Baylor All-American Odyssey Sims chipped in 13 points and six assists for Team USA.
“I thought our defensive intensity, really set the tone for the game,” Coale said. “Czech Republic can really shoot that ball. They have a lot of players who can score in a lot of different ways, but we sped them up. They got some looks, but they were rushed, everything was rushed, and we made them play a little faster than they were comfortable with playing.”
Team USA can wrap up the top seed in Group B with a win over Brazil Wednesday. Game time is 4:30 a.m. EDT. A win by the Americans would set up a quarterfinal matchup between the loser of Wednesday’s game between Russia and Sweden on Thursday.