All-American Maya Moore is not injured. She is not sick. She is just human like the rest of us. And sometimes that’s a fact that’s easy to overlook.
Moore simply was not at her best offensively today in the Huskies’ 59-43 win over No. 17 Georgetown in the Big East tournament quarterfinals. She finished with a season-low six points on 2-of-12 shooting (0-of-2 3-pointers).
It was just the fifth time in 147 career games that Moore has failed to reach double figures in scoring. Her career-low is four points at Marquette Jan. 13, 2010.
“They scramble the game up,’’ UConn coach Geno Auriemma said of Georgetown defensively. “They make the game disjointed a little bit. They’re able to kind of make you have to do things … wherever you’re used to going you can’t go there. So you’ve got to kind of think it through a little bit. When you’re not making shots like today … She made a bunch down there at their place (20 points Feb. 26). And she struggled right from the beginning of the game today. And sometimes when you’re doing that you kind of become your own worst enemy. It’s not like what the other team’s doing to you. It’s what you’re not doing or what you’re trying to do. And that happens. It’s happened to a lot of players that have played here. Good ones, bad ones and mediocre ones.’’
Moore made a jumper with 15:07 left in the first half. She did not score for the next 27:28 before making two free throws with 7:49 left in the game.
When Moore made a leaner off the glass with 5:16 left she snapped a run of nine straight missed shots. It was one of those days for the nation’s best player.
Still, Moore did not quit as she finished with 15 rebounds and two assists in 34 minutes.
“I think it was just one of those games,’’ sophomore Kelly Faris said. “It’s Maya and she plays amazing every night. So the second that she misses a couple shots everybody’s like, `Oh, my gosh, what happened?’ I still think she had a fine game and she figured out other things to do.’’
Stefanie Dolson scored a career-high 24 points, the most by a UConn freshman in their first postseason game.
“Every game is definitely a good step, but a game like this just teaches how to be 10 times more aggressive than I was before,’’ Dolson said. “And in a game like this where they came out pressuring you the whole 40 minutes I think I played as tough as I could. And just from a game like this going into the tournament it’s great. It’s a great experience because I’ll know how to be as tough and aggressive (in the future).’’
It was an impressive offensive game by Dolson, for sure. But in typical UConn fashion neither Auriemma nor Dolson were doing cartwheels following the performance.
“I don’t think Stefanie played all that great today,’’ Auriemma said. “She doesn’t think she played all that great. There were a lot of things that I think we could’ve done to help her a little bit more. For her first time out, though, in the tournament … We’ve seen that for the last month or month and a half. If we go to her and we go to her often, she’s going to convert. She finishes around the basket. She draws fouls. If we just could’ve made a couple more shots around her it would’ve been even better. She has to have a great postseason for us to go very far, as does Bria (Hartley). Tiffany (Hayes) has to play like she did in the first half. So a lot has to go right. And, tonight, for 20 minutes a lot went right. And for 20 minutes nothing went right.’’
Rutgers junior Chelsey Lee changed her uniform number from 34 to 52 this season to honor injured Rutgers football player Eric LaGrand.