By Carl Adamec
As many of us here in the Northeast are sitting through a snowstorm, the University of Connecticut and Stanford University women’s basketball teams are about set for a 1-2 showdown at Maples Pavilion (4 p.m., ESPNU).
The second-ranked Huskies (10-0) are 13-3 in games featuring the top two teams in the Associated Press poll, including 3-0 against the Cardinal in three meetings in just over a one-year span. Stanford is 1-7 in such affairs with a home win over No. 2 Alabama on Nov. 17, 1996.
Stanford (11-0) brings an 82-game home winning streak into the contest. UConn is 0-3 against Stanford at Maples Pavilion and 1-4 overall in the building. The Huskies lost to Stanford (72-53) and Virginia Tech (65-63) to finish fourth in the 1988 Cardinal Classic. On Dec. 28, 1993, Stanford whipped UConn 94-75. The Huskies’ lone win at Maples Pavilion came on Nov. 17, 1996 in the second game of the State Farm Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame Tipoff Classic. After Stanford beat Alabama, UConn topped Western Kentucky 74-56. Carla Berube and Nykesha Sales each reached the 1,000-point plateau while freshman Shea Ralph scored 13 points in her collegiate debut. In the Huskies’ last appearance at Maples Pavilion, Stanford ended their NCAA record 90-game winning streak with a 71-59 victory on Dec. 30, 2010.
UConn coach Geno Auriemma is 66-27 (.710) against fellow coaches in the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame. Auriemma was inducted into the Hall in 2006 in his first year of eligibility while Stanford’s Tara VanDerveer was a member of the Class of 2011.
Freshman Morgan Tuck, who missed UConn’s last two games with a right knee bone bruise, is available off the Huskies’ bench today according to reports out of California.
UConn wraps up its west-coast trip Monday with a game at Oregon (2-9). The Ducks are coached by former Los Angeles Lakers, Loyola Marymount, and Phoenix Mercury coach Paul Westhead.