How to Watch
Time: 7 PM ET
TV: SNY (local) | Fox Sports App (out of market)
Radio: 97-9 ESPN
Location: Finneran Pavilion
UConn is 36-17 all-time against Villanova, winning their last meeting in January 2013 by a score of 76-43. The series started off rocky for the Huskies, where they lost 14 straight against Villanova from 1981 to 1989. Things have turned around since then and the Huskies have currently won their last ten meetings. The series picks up tonight as UConn continues to meet old, familiar Big East foes.
The third ranked UConn Huskies (4-0 overall, 3-0 Big East) take on Villanova (7-0 overall, 1-0 Big East) at Finneran Pavilion.
Villanova has gotten off to a strong start, winning their first seven games. The Wildcats have been able to pull out some close games, with three victories coming by 5 points or less. Villanova is anchored by three key players, all scoring in double figures this season. They are led by reigning Big East player of the week, Madison Siegrist (24.4 ppg, 12.6 rpg) along with Brianna Herlihy (15.7 ppg, 7.7 rpg), and Sarah Mortensen (11.2 ppg, 5.8 rpg). However, the Wildcats do most of their work inside the arc as they have only shot better than 30% from three-point range in two games this season and are averaging just 26.3% from deep in seven games. Look for Villanova to struggle inside against the UConn front court.
The Huskies have won with excellent team defense this season. However, the offense is not too far behind. UConn ranks in the top 10 in several statistical categories on both the offensive and defensive end. The Huskies are holding opponents to 28.7% shooting from the field (4th in the nation per HerHoopStats) and opponents are making only 21% of their three-point attempts. On the offensive side of the ball, UConn ranks number one in the country in field goal percentage, sinking 57% of their field-goal attempts (per HerHoopStats). The Huskies have also pulled up their poor three-point field goal percentage and are now shooting 35.8% from deep as a team. If UConn can continue to improve their outside shooting, this could be a rough game for the Wildcats.
The Huskies continue to roll and take down the Wildcats with relative ease. Villanova will struggle to keep pace if they continue to shoot poorly from deep and I expect the UConn defense to limit the Wildcats interior offense. Huskies win big.