STORRS, Conn. (March 1, 2014) – The No. 24 Rutgers women’s basketball team faced the top-ranked Connecticut Huskies for the final time as conference opponents in the regular season on Saturday at Gampel Pavilion, with the Scarlet Knights falling, 72-35.
UConn, which honored seniors Stefanie Dolson and Bria Hartley prior to tipoff, remained perfect at 30-0 on the year and 17-0 in the American. The Scarlet Knights, meanwhile, dropped to 21-7 overall and 12-5 in the league. Rutgers will need to defeat USF on Monday night at the RAC to secure the No. 3 seed at next weekend’s American Athletic Conference Tournament at Mohegan Sun.
Rutgers was led by junior forward Betnijah Laney (Clayton, Del.), who narrowly missed a double-double with 14 points and nine rebounds. Freshman guard Tyler Scaife (Little Rock, Ark.) collected eight points in the loss, while redshirt sophomore guard Briyona Canty (Willingboro, N.J.) scored six in starting for injured leading scorer Kahleah Copper (Philadelphia, Pa.).
Scaife’s first points of the afternoon came with RU trailing just 5-4 three minutes into the contest, but from there Connecticut scored nine consecutive points and never looked back. RU only drew as close as eight in following minute before the Huskies took a double-digit edge for good.
A Laney jumper with 14:06 had the Scarlet Knights trailing, 16-8, but the Huskies responded with 10 answered points and outscored RU, 14-2, over the next seven minutes.
At the half, Connecticut led 45-20 behind 14 points from Hartley and 13 points from Breanna Stewart. Both Huskies finished the game with 20 points. Stewart collected a double-double, hauling in 10 boards.
RU drew no closer than 23 in the opening minutes of the second half.
The Rutgers women’s basketball team closes out the regular season by hosting USF on Monday, March 3, as both battle for the No. 3 seed at the upcoming American Athletic Conference Tournament. The Scarlet Knights and Bulls will tip-off at 7:30 p.m., with the game airing on the American Digital Network. Tara Petrolino and LaChina Robinson will be on the call for the contest.
While the Scarlet Knights’ roster boasts no seniors, RU’s three senior managers – Lance Ringer, Anthony Lorenzo and Sean Morgan – will be honored prior to the game.
- No. 24 Rutgers dropped to 21-7 overall and 12-5 in the American with the loss to No. 1 UConn Saturday afternoon at Gampel Pavilion.
- The starting line-up of Tyler Scaife, Briyona Canty, Syessence Davis and Betnijah Laney and Ariel Butts was used for the second time this season.
- Sophomore Kahleah Copper did not play due to injury.
- Junior Betnijah Laney reached double figures for fourth-straight game and 18th time this year, finishing with 14 points to lead the Scarlet Knights.
- The Scarlet Knights were held to their lowest scoring output (35) and lowest shooting percentage (25.8) this season. The 35 points were the fewest since RU scored 39 vs. USF on March 9, 2013, while the 25.8 percent shooting clip was the team’s lowest since shooting 25.9 percent vs. Syracuse on Feb. 19, 2013.
- The Scarlet Knights’ 20 first-half points against UConn were its fewest scored in an opening stanza this season. RU’s 15 second-half points were its fewest in any period this season.
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