Olivia nelson-ododa changed into at the center of a decisive run whilst uconn took over its candy sixteen recreation against indiana with 16 consecutive points to open the 0.33 zone saturday at general mortgage area.
She passed to paige bueckers for 3-pointer, scored in the paint, then fed christyn williams for a streaking layup that pushed the huskies’ result in eleven.
“the way we exercise and what we stress and what we cost, I think our huge youngsters grow to be top passers,” educate geno auriemma stated. “it helps if they want to be. It facilitates if they’re unselfish. So whilst you’re looking to recruit a child, you’re hoping that you could locate someone that does have a feel for the game, does have a feel of looking to be extra than just going to dam, catches, and rating.
“we’ve been lucky. We’ve had some outstanding ones which have performed that position. And over the last four years, liv has turn out to be a bit bit better each 12 months. For a post participant to have over a hundred assists, that’s saying something.”
Nelson-ododa, a 6 foot five senior, has turn out to be so precious because of her versatility. She’s an excellent defender because she’s long, a great passer because she is sensible and has evolved better vision in the 1/2-court offense. She isn’t the fine finisher towards pinnacle competition — hasn’t been thus far, besides — however she is, arguably, the most dependable piece of a succesful however inconsistent frontcourt puzzle that uconn will want a solid displaying from monday night inside the bridgeport local very last against nc country.
Elissa cunane, additionally 6-5, is the wolfpack’s maximum dominant player, a conventional publish participant that the huskies will must arise to. Cunane is averaging team highs of thirteen.6 factors and seven.6 rebounds, and taking pictures 52.7 percent from the sphere. She had 10 rebounds saturday in nc kingdom’s comeback victory over notre dame.
Uconn is coming off a sturdy rebounding overall performance — a 39-27 facet, with 15 offensive boards to indiana’s — in its 75-58 sweet 16 victory.
“that’s one thing instruct [wes] moore focuses on all the time is that offense sells tickets, protection wins games, and rebounding wins championships,” said cunane, who had sixteen points in 36-plus minutes towards the irish, making five of 10 photographs and 6 of seven unfastened throws. “I suppose we’re without a doubt simply centered on rebounding. … now not letting [uconn] get o-boards, that’s going to be massive, looking at the numbers that uconn placed up [saturday]. I think simply focusing on boxing them out and not permitting them to get o-forums after which with a bit of luck going to get it myself.”
A few mixture of nelson-ododa, sophomore aaliyah edwards and graduate switch dorka juhasz will should maintain stress on cunane, and preserve her honest on defense, if the huskies are to attain a 14th consecutive very last 4.
In nelson-ododa’s case, which means thriving in which she often hasn’t, near the basket in games like this, and also where she regularly has — with the ball in her fingers, drawing post players, and locating open uconn guards for jump shots or drives.
“I suppose it’s some thing that’s definitely just developed during the last 4 years, specifically before coming to college, that I by no means clearly did that during that sense in phrases of being a facilitator like that,” nelson-ododa stated of her passing. “but I assume the huge part of why I’m capable of do that is due to my teammates and just their potential to get open, make the right cuts and kind of simply role themselves in a way that they understand is pleasant for them to get open and score. So I supply lots of credit to them for that.”
Nelson-ododa is averaging 9.Five factors, 7.6 rebounds and 26.Nine minutes. She also has a team-excessive 109 assists, one greater than freshman defend caroline ducharme. Paige bueckers had 168 assists in 29 video games last season and in reality might be leading the huskies in that category once more if she had no longer ignored 19 games with a knee damage.
Still, nelson-ododa being more than a make-or-pass over, again-to-the-basket put up player helps preserve uconn’s offense fluid. Auriemma’s offense has lots to do with movement off the ball, movement that hasn’t repay until a person within the paint can spray that ball in different instructions.