UConn Women Defeat Marquette 58-29 in Big East Tourney Semifinal

Written by on 03/11/2024

      Playing without senior forward Aaliyah Edwards, the UConn Women’s Basketball team soundly defeated the Marquette Golden Eagles 58-29 in a semifinal game at the Big East Conference Tournament held at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Connecticut on Sunday afternoon.

       Competing before a packed house of over 10,000 fans, the contest was dominated by Big East Player of the year Paige Bueckers who scored 27 points, captured 12 rebounds and had four assists to lead the Huskies to their second twenty plus margin in the conference tournament.

       Only one other UConn player, forward Ice Brady, scored in double figures with 10 points, with freshman forward Ashlynn Shade scoring 9 points and other starters and substitutes limited to no more than five points.

      Brady started the game for the Huskies after All American forward Aaliyah Edwards sat out the game in warmups after taking an elbow to her nose in the quarter final versus Providence on Saturday.

      Senior forward Liza Karlen lead the Golden Eagles with 12 points while sophomore guard Mackenzie Hare contributed 9 points, with three shots from outside the stripe.

      UConn came out aggressively to start the game, with Paige Buckers scoring six points and point guard Nika Muehl shooting a three before Marquette’s Liza Karlen scored for the first time with 3:38 left in the first quarter.  The second quarter ended 31-20 following a big three point shot by UConn freshman Ashlynn Shade.

      The Huskies continued to dominate the game in the third quarter, with Bueckers contributing both assists and steals as well as points. She ended the third quarter with a three-point shot at the buzzer, igniting the crowd of mostly UConn fans.

       During the fourth quarter, UConn Coach Geno Auriemma brought in freshman Quadence Samuels to replace Brady, who scored five points, including one three pointer, to assist her team’s efforts.  The Huskies scored 11 points in the fourth quarter, limiting the Golden Eagles to no points.

       At the press conference after the game, Coach Auriemma noted that the team, with a limited lineup available, understood that today’s game was different because everyone knew they needed to play without a breather.

      Asked about Edwards’ condition, Auriemma confirmed that her nose was broken and if she was not available for the conference tournament final on Monday, expected that she would be ready for the NCAA tournament in two weeks.

      The Huskies will play the Georgetown Hoyas in the Championship game on Monday night at 7:00 p.m. after the number 6 seeded Hoyas upset the number 2 seeded Creighton Bluejays 55-46 in Sunday’s other semifinal game.  The Championship game will be broadcast on FS1.

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