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Impressive Balance by Notre Dame

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Wbbfan1

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128-42 ND over Mercer - Link

Mercer obviously doesn't have the talent ND has and were over whelmed and had no chance to make it a competitive game. When I first saw the score, I thought I wonder why ND played their starters for so many minutes. Then I looked at the box score and was surprised how spread out the scoring was amongst the ND players and the minutes the subs played.

What I like about this ND team and it does concern me when they play UConn is ND has so many scoring options with their starters and the subs coming off the bench. IMHO they have more scoring options then UConn does. The game against ND will definitely test UConn's defense and Stef will have to stay out of foul trouble and score in double digits.
 
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128-42 ND over Mercer - Link

Mercer obviously doesn't have the talent ND has and were over whelmed and had no chance to make it a competitive game. When I first saw the score, I thought I wonder why ND played their starters for so many minutes. Then I looked at the box score and was surprised how spread out the scoring was amongst the ND players and the minutes the subs played.

What I like about this ND team and it does concern me when they play UConn is ND has so many scoring options with their starters and the subs coming off the bench. IMHO they have more scoring options then UConn does. The game against ND will definitely test UConn's defense and Stef will have to stay out of foul trouble and score in double digits.

I don't think that is going to be a problem for Stef. She had a rough few games before the last game, but now she is like the old Stef of last year. We will need both Heather(playing like she has been so far this year) and Stokes to back up Stef. I'm not at all worried about our guard play. Doty, Hartley, Lewis, Faris, Hayes, and Banks match up very well against Notre Dame's guards.
 

Icebear

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Biggest problem for us at guard is hoping Caroline doesn't get run over like she did against ND in the Big East two years ago. A scary moment as she got pancaked.

The best way to stop ND is to order a halt to all indulgences.

Yikes!!! Mercer was called for 37 pfs and ND added another 20 57 whistles in the game.
 

alexrgct

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Mercer is really, really bad. Any time you put up 128, that's pretty impressive, but I'm confident Lauren, Michala, Kiah, Banks, and Buck could put up numbers on them. They shorten their bench significantly against good opponents.

ND is a dangerous team, but they are significantly behind UConn defensively thus far. I will be very disappointed if UConn loses more than once against them.
 

UConnCat

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Notre Dame shot an incredible 52 FTs against Mercer and made an equally incredible 43 FTs. That's nearly 83%, which is better than the 72% on FTs Notre Dame had made going in to the game.

As was the case in the FF game last year, FTs and fouls will be an important factor in deciding who wins next week and in future match-ups between the teams. Notre Dame draws a ton of fouls and shoots 27 FTs per game, while UConn typically plays excellent defense without fouling. In the FF game last year, UConn was called for a lot of fouls in the 2nd half which was a big factor in deciding the outcome. Novosel and Diggins are particularly adept at drawing fouls in the lane, so it will be important for UConn to keep them out of the lane and off the FT line. BTW, Notre Dame also commits more fouls than UConn, but UConn is not a team that draws a lot of fouls. Another key will be UConn's 3-point shooting. UConn shoots a lot more 3s than ND (21 vs 12.5/g) and will of course need to shoot a good percentage.

ND and UConn both start 4 guards, but it'll be interesting to see if and for how long ND goes with both Achonwa and Peters in the game. I haven't watched ND play enough to know how much Achonwa and Peters play together but next week's game could be an interesting chess-match.
 

doggydaddy

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128-42 ND over Mercer - Link

Mercer obviously doesn't have the talent ND has and were over whelmed and had no chance to make it a competitive game. When I first saw the score, I thought I wonder why ND played their starters for so many minutes. Then I looked at the box score and was surprised how spread out the scoring was amongst the ND players and the minutes the subs played.

What I like about this ND team and it does concern me when they play UConn is ND has so many scoring options with their starters and the subs coming off the bench. IMHO they have more scoring options then UConn does. The game against ND will definitely test UConn's defense and Stef will have to stay out of foul trouble and score in double digits.

Your first sentence makes your subject line moot. Mercer is just a terrible team. And any kind of analysis for future play against UConn based on this game is really just meaningless.

They had three bench players that average 14.3 points a game in 48 minutes and they had 49 points in 70 minutes.

For comparison, against Duke, Baylor and Kentucky, those 3 had a total of 7 points in 75 minutes. You can expect similar minutes and output by these three against UConn.

ND does several players that can score but so does UConn. I don't see much difference here. The scoring will come from the top 5-6 scorers for both teams.

Diggins 16.4, Novosel 15.9, McBride 11.9, Peters 10.6, Anchowa 9.1, Mallory 5.9

Lewis 15.3, Hartley 14.5, Hayes 14.3, Dolson 10.2, Doty 6.6, Faris 6.3

Looks pretty even to me.
 

pap49cba

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The Mercer game is irrelevant.

To think we likely will see this team at least two, probably three, and perhaps four times is a bit daunting. I think we will split the home and home and then? Who knows.
 

wire chief

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We'll want to feed Stef and drive, cause Peters has a fouling tendency. Costly for them if Peters sits a lot.
 

Ruffian75

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When a team scores 128 you would ecpect the scoring to be balanced. ND is a damn good team and hardly like the Brooklyn HS team a few years back when one player scored 113
 

Tonyc

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ND at ND is always tuff. Dribble drives and back doors are going to hurt ND. Stef with her size is going to hurt ND. This is going to be a hard fought game and UConn will win. If Diggins gets penetration I can see Stef and Heather playing side by side to counter her dribble drive. This is going to be one heck of a game.
 

Ruffian75

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TC....do you really think that we are now going to see Stef and Heather playing real minutes together? It didn't happen against Baylor and I doubt it will happen anytime soon. I would like to see Geno try it though.
 

Tonyc

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Not saying we will see it but just mentioning it. I really like what I saw during the Fairfield game. Going to Stef, Heather taking a couple of shots and Tiffany scoring. This is what we need to happen in the second half of the season. All three have to become factors on offense. Everybody knows about Bria and KML. Having Tiff, Stef and Heather as scorers will take alot of pressure off Bria and KML.
 
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128-42 ND over Mercer - Link

Mercer obviously doesn't have the talent ND has and were over whelmed and had no chance to make it a competitive game. When I first saw the score, I thought I wonder why ND played their starters for so many minutes. Then I looked at the box score and was surprised how spread out the scoring was amongst the ND players and the minutes the subs played.

What I like about this ND team and it does concern me when they play UConn is ND has so many scoring options with their starters and the subs coming off the bench. IMHO they have more scoring options then UConn does. The game against ND will definitely test UConn's defense and Stef will have to stay out of foul trouble and score in double digits.
I don't see how you can make any meaningful conclusions out of such a non-game like that. Would you make such conclusions if they were playing a high school team too?
 

speedoo

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TC....do you really think that we are now going to see Stef and Heather playing real minutes together? It didn't happen against Baylor and I doubt it will happen anytime soon. I would like to see Geno try it though.
Unfortunately for Heather, the player she would likely replace to play alongside Stef is Kelly, and the only thing that will put Kelly on the bench is foul trouble or an injury, neither of which is likely for The Iron Woman (great nickname for Kelly IMO)

Even if Muffett goes with both Peters and Achonwa, Kelly stays in, I will bet.
 
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Your first sentence makes your subject line moot. Mercer is just a terrible team. And any kind of analysis for future play against UConn based on this game is really just meaningless.

They had three bench players that average 14.3 points a game in 48 minutes and they had 49 points in 70 minutes.

For comparison, against Duke, Baylor and Kentucky, those 3 had a total of 7 points in 75 minutes. You can expect similar minutes and output by these three against UConn.

ND does several players that can score but so does UConn. I don't see much difference here. The scoring will come from the top 5-6 scorers for both teams.

Diggins 16.4, Novosel 15.9, McBride 11.9, Peters 10.6, Anchowa 9.1, Mallory 5.9

Lewis 15.3, Hartley 14.5, Hayes 14.3, Dolson 10.2, Doty 6.6, Faris 6.3

Looks pretty even to me.

Excellent analysis.
 

Wbbfan1

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The majority are missing the point I'm making and/or disagree with the premise.

Anyone know how many of UConn's bench players have scored in double digits this year. Its two, KML and Brianna Banks(twice). However, realistically only KML can be relied upon to get points off the bench. UConn remaining bench players are not scorers. UConn has played teams similar to Mercer and UConn's bench players are unable to put points on the board like ND's bench players did against Mercer. The point I was making that if ND has to or decides to go deep into their bench they have players that can score.

By comparison, this years UConn team is limited by the number of players that can consistently score regardless of the level of talent of the team they are playing. IMHO of the starters Stef, Tiff, Bria should consistently score in double digits regardless of team UConn is playing. However, some of us have commented that Tiff seems to lose her shooting touch against better teams. This year, she is contributing in other facets of the game where in past years, her whole game suffered. Even Stef has not scored consistently against teams that she should dominate this year. She has not played like the 2nd best center in the country as Geno has said she is. Based on the game against Fairfield, I'm hoping that she realizes that and we'll start to see the Stef we saw at the end of last year. Caroline and Kelly cannot be relied upon to score in double digits, even though they significantly contribute in other ways to help UConn win.

Coming off the bench, only KML can be relied upon to get points. Brianna has to stay out of Geno's doghouse if she is going to get significant playing time and then she might become another player that can be relied upon to score off the bench.

If this team is going to win a National Championship it will take more then great defense. Caroline Doty and Kelly Faris have to become a regular part of the offense and score on a consistent basis. Also there needs to be another consistent scoring option off the bench besides KML. Ideally it would be Kiah as that would allow UConn to go bigger when necessary or when Stef gets into foul trouble. I wish I could say Heather as she plays better defense then Kiah, but so far by her play that's not going to happen. Her highest scoring game was 11 points against Pacific last year.
 

speedoo

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We disagree with your premise. To repeat, analyzing ND based on the Mercer game is totally meaningless, therefore comparing ND to UConn based on that game is also meaningless.
 

alexrgct

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Geno doesn't give his bench players the kind of minutes Notre Dame's bench players got against Mercer. If he did, they'd score the kinds of points off the bench that ND's bench players did against Mercer. You don't think Lauren Engeln could drop 15 on Mercer? But that's not how Geno operates. Playing time is earned, even against poor competition. Moreover many of Geno's very best teams (which this year isn't, btw) did not use much of a bench.

And you can say what you will about defense not being enough, but when you give up 94 points to anyone, you're not in position to win a national championship. You can beat a Baylor holding them under 70, even if UConn lost that game. You are not winning a shootout. Giving up 83 to Kentucky is troublesome too. They easily could have lost to Duke.

I'm not saying that ND is not a worthy opponent because they obviously are, but they have looked shakier than UConn over the course of this season thus far in my estimation.
 
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Original posting makes no sense. Against good teams benches get shorter. Look at four games against ND last year. Listed by game are the minutes the top 6 ND players played out of 200 and how many points the non top 6 scored (listed in chrono order): 180-4; 172-2; 176-5; 180-0. So last year the top 6 players had all but 11 of ND's points in total for 4 games and you are worried about their deep roster having scoring potential all over it?
I'm more encouraged by Doty's last game "making personal offensive play" and Dolson taking up some space. Tiff always looks good against teams that can't guard and KML either makes shots or not so neither did much to encourage or discourage.
More worried about Kelly hiding on offense - works against crumby teams but is big liability against good teams. She shoots way too few shots and way too high a % of those are 3's. She is the power forward (assuming Tiff is small forward) that replaces Maya. Maya shot last year 28% of her shots as 3's (seemed like more but that's what it was) and hit 38%; Kelly shoots 39% of her shots as 3's and makes 29%. She provides no inside offensive presence so its all on Stef in this lineup. If you cannot make an offense move or get an offensive rebound to get a basket against Fairfield that is saying a lot.
Stef is not going to get as good position against ND or other teams with "mean girls" so how do we score if play mostly top 6 players which is Stef and 5 under 6 ft players. Keep turnovers down, shoot well from outside, steals - what else? Don't expect lot of inside fire power from Kelly, Tiff or KML.
Last year not playing Heather cost the championship; this year not getting some Kiah/Heather with Dolson and Heather/Kiah and Heather alone playing time in a significant manner through out the season to get ready for NCAA's is a mistake. How could you not play Heather "at all" against Stanford?
Only real games to date have been Stanford and Baylor (A&M wasn't). Look at inside starting players other than Stef:
Kelly - goes 1-10 from 3's and 0-4 on 2's. So in big games our power forward who shoots29% 3 pointerx shoots 71% of her shots as 3' vs other games she shoots 30% of her shots as 3's. See anything wrong here (power forward and worst 3 point shooter steps up her 3 point shooting)? The over passing and not making personal offensive moves to the basket and having no ability to rebound and put back misses (didn't say couldn't rebound) leaves the other team guarding 4 players (and clogs up the middle as her defender sags) and Kelly relegated to jacking up 3's.
Tiff - goes 3-13 on 3's and 4-14 on 2's. So in big games our small forward who shots 34% 3's goes from shooting 26% of her shots as 3's to 48% 3's. Her 2 point shooting % in big games is 28% vs. 57% in other games. This reflects how good interior defense and dribble penetration defense is against elite teams vs. how easy it if for an aggressive player to score efficiently against the Fairfields of the world.
Bad lineup strategy being Stef and 4 small (especially with Kelly hiding on offense, hopefully Doty stops hiding but if she reverts back to Baylor performance then is even more of a problem because that forces Tiff to step up); Uconn has so many good players it will only matter when it really matters. Not saying can't play this lineup part of game and press and trap, just saying over 40 minutes is not the winning strategy (especially when stop press and/or play zone). There is a reason that the starting lineup against Stanford and Baylor is minus 8 in each game for both halves combined before KML checks in.
 

Tonyc

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Husky68 some very interesting numbers. Uconn is defense first and imo the best fundamentally run team in wcbb. No question we need more scorers and against a team like ND we should shine. Why? Because we are quicker,we execute and we have Stef underneatb. It was very apparent to me in the Fairfield game that getting Stef Heather and Tiffany scoring twas the message. You can bet Muffins game plan is to make Kelly and Tiffany beat her from the outside.
 

doggydaddy

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The majority are missing the point I'm making and/or disagree with the premise.
I agree that the majority are disagreeing with the premise.

I agree that the majority disagree with your premise. Stats against Mercer mean nothing. I don't think anyone is missing your point. They just all disagree with it.

Anyone know how many of UConn's bench players have scored in double digits this year. Its two, KML and Brianna Banks(twice). However, realistically only KML can be relied upon to get points off the bench. UConn remaining bench players are not scorers. UConn has played teams similar to Mercer and UConn's bench players are unable to put points on the board like ND's bench players did against Mercer. The point I was making that if ND has to or decides to go deep into their bench they have players that can score.

Ok, the point you were making was that if ND has to or decides to go deep into their bench, they have players that can score. And you base this on the Mercer game and the number of double digit games the bench provides. I would say that my response to your original post in this thread holds true. In games against teams that would actually challenge ND, those very same bench players do NOT score, so they have NO advantage in bench production.
By comparison, this years UConn team is limited by the number of players that can consistently score regardless of the level of talent of the team they are playing.

And what team doesn't have this limitation? Certainly ND (against tough teams) can only rely on Achonwa and off the bench. Most teams scorers come from the starters. Name another that has their leading scorer coming off the bench.

IMHO of the starters Stef, Tiff, Bria should consistently score in double digits regardless of team UConn is playing.

Stef has scored DD in 7 of 11 games with two 8 point games and one 9 point game.
Tiff has scored DD in 8 of 11 games with one 9 point game
Bria has scored DD in 9 of 11 games with one 8 point game.

Seems pretty consistant to me.

However, some of us have commented that Tiff seems to lose her shooting touch against better teams. This year, she is contributing in other facets of the game where in past years, her whole game suffered. Even Stef has not scored consistently against teams that she should dominate this year. She has not played like the 2nd best center in the country as Geno has said she is. Based on the game against Fairfield, I'm hoping that she realizes that and we'll start to see the Stef we saw at the end of last year. Caroline and Kelly cannot be relied upon to score in double digits, even though they significantly contribute in other ways to help UConn win.

And in spite of all this, they have beaten everyone but Baylor.

Coming off the bench, only KML can be relied upon to get points. Brianna has to stay out of Geno's doghouse if she is going to get significant playing time and then she might become another player that can be relied upon to score off the bench.

While it would nice to get more points off the bench other than Lewis, it's not necessary for UCONN to be successful.
If this team is going to win a National Championship it will take more then great defense.

And they have more, but great defense can put you in position to win any game.

Caroline Doty and Kelly Faris have to become a regular part of the offense and score on a consistent basis. Also there needs to be another consistent scoring option off the bench besides KML. Ideally it would be Kiah as that would UConn to go bigger when necessary or when Stef gets into foul trouble. I wish I could say Heather as she plays better defense then Kiah, but so far by her play that's not going to happen. Her highest scoring game was 11 points against Pacific last year.

Doty is NOT going to be consistant this year. And it's not necessary for them to become National Champions this year. Faris is leading the team in assists. You can't be more involved with the offense than that. They also don't NEED more scoring off the bench. They just need defense and rebounding from both Stokes and Buck. Scoring is just a bonus.

I get your point and your premise. I disagree with both.
 

pap49cba

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In a close game the bench players will be.... on the bench.
 

DaddyChoc

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We disagree with your premise. To repeat, analyzing ND based on the Mercer game is totally meaningless, therefore comparing ND to UConn based on that game is also meaningless.
same thing can be said about the Fairfield comments posted in this thread
 

doggydaddy

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same thing can be said about the Fairfield comments posted in this thread
In some ways you are right.

But Fairfield is 99 in RPI and Mercer is 302. So in a lot of ways, you are wrong.
 
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