UConn vs So. Carolina prediction thread | The Boneyard

UConn vs So. Carolina prediction thread

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cferraro04

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It is hard to compare So. Carolina to UConn on a player by player basis because Dawn has 10 players playing double digits minutes and Geno has 9 players getting double digit minutes... Let's face it...Dawn has Wilson, Coates and Cuevas coming off the bench and everyone knows that both Coates and Wilson should be starting. South Carolina is a different team with both of them on the floor. However, it is always interesting to look at the game from a potential player by player match-up.

South Carolina

5'9" Jr. (G) - Tiffany Mitchell (27.7 min) - 15.3 points / game
6'5" Fr. (G/F) - A'ja Wilson (21.4 min) - 13.6 points / game
6'4" So. (C) - Alaina Coates (20.5 min) - 11.1 points / game
6'0" Sr. (F) - Aleighsa Welch (24.9 min) - 9.6 points / game
6'4" Sr. (C) - Elem Ibiam (17.6 min) - 7.1 points / game
5'6" Fr. (G) - Bianca Cuevas (14.3 min) - 5.4 points / game
6'0" Jr. (G/F) - Asia Dozier (16.7 min) - 4.5 points / game
5'11" Jr. (G) - Tina Roy (15.6 min) - 4.5 points / game
5'8" Jr. (G) - Khadijah Sessions (21.2 min) - 3.8 points / game
6'4" - F (F) - Jatarie White (10.8 min) - 3/6 points / game

70.8 poins

UConn

6'4" Jr. (F) - Breanna Stewart (27.9 min) - 16.9 points / game
5'11" Sr. (F) - Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis (28.1 min) - 14.7 points / game
6'2" So. (F) - Morgan Tuck (25.3 min) - 14.4 points / game
6'0" Fr (G) - Kia Nurse (24.5 min) - 11.9 points / game
5'7" Jr. (G) - Moriah Jefferson (26.6 min) - 11.7 points / game
5'11" Fr. (G) - Gabby Williams (16.4 min) - 8.2 points / game
5'8" So. (G) - Saniya Chong (20.3 min) - 5.8 points / game
6'3" Sr. (C) - Kiah Stokes (20.7 min) - 5.4 points / game
6.0 Fr. (G) - Courtney Ekmark (14.2 min) - 2.2 points / game

90.4 points

We know that both Geno and Dawn will shorten their bench during tight games and that key players will play more minutes so, the keys will be: 1. Which key players on each team steps up and has a good day? 2. Which players will have a bad scoring day? 3. Which players will get into foul trouble and when in the game does that occur?

Dawn's team is big with 4 players 6'4" or bigger. Geno's team at this point in the season is farther along offensively than Dawn's. Both teams have great team defense...UConn is number 2 while South Carolina is number 8. Dawn's team is not that good from the FT line .673...that is the good news, however, the bad news is...they get to the line more (282 - 419) than UConn does (227 - 230). UConn is a better three point shooting team with numerous players who can shoot the three: Stewart, Lewis, Tuck, Nurse, Jefferson, Chong - (163-397 or .411). South Carolina has the three in their arsenal but they have less people who shoot them and they make them less frequently: Mitchell, Roy and Dozier - (99 - 280 or .354).

Match-ups

Tiffany Mitchell vs Kia Nurse - Kia will have her hands full with Tiffany. Tiffany is a versatile guard who can handle, shoot the three, pull up for the mid-range jumper and she can defend. It can be argued that Tiffany is Dawn's best all around player. Tiffany has three years experience at the college level but we have seen that Kia plays beyond her years. I think Kia does a decent job defending Tiffany but at the end of the day I think the ADVANTAGE lies with Tiffany.

Khadijah Sessions vs Moriah Jefferson - Moriah is playing other worldly now and Dawn will have to play Moriah by committee...I think we will see Khadijah, Bianca Cuevas and Asia Dozier all taking a crack at containing Moriah. Moriah will be disruptive on the defensive end and I think Moriah will control tempo and keep her turnovers low giving the ADVANTAGE to Moriah

Aleighsa Welch vs Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis - Aleighsa is Dawn's spark-plug and I look for her to be all over KML...draped on her like a wet blanket...as Dawn tries to "cut off the head". How successful will UConn be setting screens to free KML and how successful will KML be in creating her own shot. I say this match-up will be somewhat EVEN unless KML can find a way to get her shots...if she does then ADVANTAGE will shift towards UConn

A'ja Wilson vs Breanna Stewart - this should be an interesting match-up. It could result in either one of them getting into foul trouble. Breanna because of A'ja's size and mobility and A'ja because of Breanna's size and mobility. Breanna has more experience at this level and that should count for something but we have seen Breanna pick up unnecessary fouls. We will need her on the floor and out of foul trouble. Breanna will need to play both inside and outside...bring A'ja outside with her to free up the middle for others to rebound. Given Breanna's experience, her ability to score and the absolute nightmare she presents to opposing teams I think she has a great game. I would say ADVANTAGE goes to Breanna with A'ja being the one who ends up in foul trouble.

Alaina Coates vs Tuck - Now this will be an great match-up. Both players are very mobile in the post. While Tuck has a plethora of post moves and is more polished Coates is an absolute beast with strength, size and soft hands inside. I think we have a similar situation here as we have in the previous match-up either on of these players could end up in foul trouble. We are thinner at the post than So. Carolina is but with Stokes coming in to spell either Stewart or Tuck should they get in foul trouble what we lose in scoring power we make up for in defense. Stokes ability to rebound and block shots may be more on demand in this game and we must remember that Stokes seems to deliver when she is needed. But, back to the Coates vs Tuck match-up...I'm going to call this one SLIGHT ADVANTAGE Tuck.

Bench - South Carolina has a very deep bench and Geno will not go that deep into his bench. With Gabby and Saniya getting limited minutes and the rest of the crew possibly not playing at all...I give the ADVANTAGE to South Carolina.

Coaching - I think Staley is a great coach, I just think Geno and staff are better. The entire WCBB world seems to be in a hurry to crown Staley as Geno's successor as the premier women's basketball coach but I think those notions are premature. I give the coaching ADVANTAGE to UConn.

Intangibles - Home court, crowd, etc... ADVANTAGE UConn

UConn by 9: 83 - 74
 
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ctfjr

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Good analysis but I think you forgot that Kiah will probably get significant minutes here. Her defense will be a big plus. If we don't win by 20 I'll be pretty disappointed.
 

cferraro04

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Look under Morgan Tuck match-up I address the additional minutes by Kiah Stokes :)
 

CTyankee

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Yeah... You gotta put Stokes into the mix... I suspect she will swap going on and off Wilson with Breanna just to keep Wilson off balance...
 
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I predict that South Carolina will not be intimidated by UCONN/Gampel Arena (they are playing there, right?) like most other opponents have been. How Wilson plays will be the key to the game.
 
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On paper, SC's height and depth advantage is pretty daunting. But that has not translated into dominating performances against the few god teams they've played.

Even the 18 point defeat against A&M is deceiving. SC shot 50% from the field and hit 24-30 throws, but A&M kept it close for much of the game and erased a half-time advantage by SC.

A&M was ahead for a while in the first half, but defeated themselves because:
1. their guard repeatedly showed the ball to the defender on the dribble, resulting in 5 steals and easy fast break layups for SC.
2. terrible foul shooting, missing the first shot in 1 and 1's.
3. attempting too few three's (3 of 8).
4. one of A&M's two offensive threats shot 3-31, resulting in a 33% from the field for A&M.

UConn will do none of the above. This is a game in which an early lead and a little offense from Stokes would be helpful. But the most important advantage will be the three's.
 
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Let's face it...Dawn has Wilson, Coates and Cuevas coming off the bench and everyone knows that both Coates and Wilson should be starting.
I'm a wee bit puzzled. Everybody knows this except Dawn?
 
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To me this game will be all about foul trouble. Stewie and KLM have to stay out
of foul trouble. SC will try to be very physical with Stewie. I think Kiah Stokes
becomes the X factor. This is the game we will need her to shine, just like the
ND game.
SC does not shoot a lot of 3's, they try to pound the ball inside. If the defense
makes it hard to pound the ball inside and makes them take outside shots, it will
put pressure on their guards to make shots.
Tiffany Mitchell is an excellent player, defending her will be key. Play good
interior defense and limit her touches and we will be fine.
 

VAMike23

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IMO, the keys against this So. Carolina squad will be:



kiah block.jpg


and:

kiah rebound.jpg
 
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JoePgh

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This is a game in which an early lead and a little offense from Stokes would be helpful. But the most important advantage will be the three's.
I agree, and I think everyone who has commented also agrees, that if UConn hits 3's the way that they have been hitting in recent games, a UConn loss is extremely improbable, and a blowout win is possible. But, as Geno has said on many occasions, accurate 3-ball shooting is not something you can take to the bank. If you depend on that to win games, you are going to lose some games to good competition.

So let me suggest this as a subtopic of this discussion: Hypothetically, if UConn is cold on its 3-point shooting in the South Carolina game (under 30%, let's say), how does UConn win? And by how much? I would say that under those circumstances, a win by more than 10 points is unlikely. I would also say that in that case, the transition game has to be running like a Swiss watch. Every defensive rebound by UConn has to at least threaten a runout and score. I think that is realistic, particularly if the Gamecocks "blitz" by throwing 3 or 4 players at the offensive boards. I don't think South Carolina is used to playing a full game at that pace, and UConn is quite capable of doing that. I think A'ja Wilson will get winded and become ineffective long before the end of the game, just as Duke's Azura Stevens did, if she has to run up and down the floor in that kind of a game.

The transition game may be the Huskies' ace in the hole.
 
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74-66. If the bench, other than Kiah, is forced to play extended minutes we're in trouble.
 
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Something about this game doesn't sit right in my stomach. Uconn 66 South Carolina 61
 

iamcbs

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We've all seen how Connecticut plays in 'big' games. This one will be no different. UConn runs its offense to well and has too many options for S. Carolina to defend. UConn defends too well and Geno has a habit of designing a defense that not only takes away the opposition's best player, but stymies what they do best on offense. UConn can go big with Kiah, Stewie and Morgan and KML out top with MoJet. They can play equally effectively small with their original starting 5. UConn will speed S.Carolina up and force them into a pce that they aren't comfortable playing. UConn will win this game by 20 at least.
 

ochoopsfan

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USC west coast--82
UConn snow coast 76

There is only one USC. The other school is South Carolina.
Fight On!!
 
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This will be a close game in the first half with UConn running away in the second. To beat SC UConn have to REBOUND force SC to one and done. Run the floor "fast breaks" will have SC bigs exhusted. Playing in Storrs I feel SC will be a lil nervous besides this will be the biggest game for them by far so UConn 84 SC 63
Against a good defense like UConn I can't see SC going off offensively they even struggles some possessions and defensively the way we move the ball and excite will have them lost and confused
 
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It is hard to compare So. Carolina to UConn on a player by player basis because Dawn has 10 players playing double digits minutes and Geno has 9 players getting double digit minutes... Let's face it...Dawn has Wilson, Coates and Cuevas coming off the bench and everyone knows that both Coates and Wilson should be starting. South Carolina is a different team with both of them on the floor. However, it is always interesting to look at the game from a potential player by player match-up.

South Carolina

5'9" Jr. (G) - Tiffany Mitchell (27.7 min) - 15.3 points / game
6'5" Fr. (G/F) - A'ja Wilson (21.4 min) - 13.6 points / game
6'4" So. (C) - Alaina Coates (20.5 min) - 11.1 points / game
6'0" Sr. (F) - Aleighsa Welch (24.9 min) - 9.6 points / game
6'4" Sr. (C) - Elem Ibiam (17.6 min) - 7.1 points / game
5'6" Fr. (G) - Bianca Cuevas (14.3 min) - 5.4 points / game
6'0" Jr. (G/F) - Asia Dozier (16.7 min) - 4.5 points / game
5'11" Jr. (G) - Tina Roy (15.6 min) - 4.5 points / game
5'8" Jr. (G) - Khadijah Sessions (21.2 min) - 3.8 points / game
6'4" - F (F) - Jatarie White (10.8 min) - 3/6 points / game

70.8 poins

UConn

6'4" Jr. (F) - Breanna Stewart (27.9 min) - 16.9 points / game
5'11" Sr. (F) - Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis (28.1 min) - 14.7 points / game
6'2" So. (F) - Morgan Tuck (25.3 min) - 14.4 points / game
6'0" Fr (G) - Kia Nurse (24.5 min) - 11.9 points / game
5'7" Jr. (G) - Moriah Jefferson (26.6 min) - 11.7 points / game
5'11" Fr. (G) - Gabby Williams (16.4 min) - 8.2 points / game
5'8" So. (G) - Saniya Chong (20.3 min) - 5.8 points / game
6'3" Sr. (C) - Kiah Stokes (20.7 min) - 5.4 points / game
6.0 Fr. (G) - Courtney Ekmark (14.2 min) - 2.2 points / game

90.4 points

We know that both Geno and Dawn will shorten their bench during tight games and that key players will play more minutes so, the keys will be: 1. Which key players on each team steps up and has a good day? 2. Which players will have a bad scoring day? 3. Which players will get into foul trouble and when in the game does that occur?

Dawn's team is big with 4 players 6'4" or bigger. Geno's team at this point in the season is farther along offensively than Dawn's. Both teams have great team defense...UConn is number 2 while South Carolina is number 8. Dawn's team is not that good from the FT line .673...that is the good news, however, the bad news is...they get to the line more (282 - 419) than UConn does (227 - 230). UConn is a better three point shooting team with numerous players who can shoot the three: Stewart, Lewis, Tuck, Nurse, Jefferson, Chong - (163-397 or .411). South Carolina has the three in their arsenal but they have less people who shoot them and they make them less frequently: Mitchell, Roy and Dozier - (99 - 280 or .354).

Match-ups

Tiffany Mitchell vs Kia Nurse - Kia will have her hands full with Tiffany. Tiffany is a versatile guard who can handle, shoot the three, pull up for the mid-range jumper and she can defend. It can be argued that Tiffany is Dawn's best all around player. Tiffany has three years experience at the college level but we have seen that Kia plays beyond her years. I think Kia does a decent job defending Tiffany but at the end of the day I think the ADVANTAGE lies with Tiffany.

Khadijah Sessions vs Moriah Jefferson - Moriah is playing other worldly now and Dawn will have to play Moriah by committee...I think we will see Khadijah, Bianca Cuevas and Asia Dozier all taking a crack at containing Moriah. Moriah will be disruptive on the defensive end and I think Moriah will control tempo and keep her turnovers low giving the ADVANTAGE to Moriah

Aleighsa Welch vs Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis - Aleighsa is Dawn's spark-plug and I look for her to be all over KML...draped on her like a wet blanket...as Dawn tries to "cut off the head". How successful will UConn be setting screens to free KML and how successful will KML be in creating her own shot. I say this match-up will be somewhat EVEN unless KML can find a way to get her shots...if she does then ADVANTAGE will shift towards UConn

A'ja Wilson vs Breanna Stewart - this should be an interesting match-up. It could result in either one of them getting into foul trouble. Breanna because of A'ja's size and mobility and A'ja because of Breanna's size and mobility. Breanna has more experience at this level and that should count for something but we have seen Breanna pick up unnecessary fouls. We will need her on the floor and out of foul trouble. Breanna will need to play both inside and outside...bring A'ja outside with her to free up the middle for others to rebound. Given Breanna's experience, her ability to score and the absolute nightmare she presents to opposing teams I think she has a great game. I would say ADVANTAGE goes to Breanna with A'ja being the one who ends up in foul trouble.

Alaina Coates vs Tuck - Now this will be an great match-up. Both players are very mobile in the post. While Tuck has a plethora of post moves and is more polished Coates is an absolute beast with strength, size and soft hands inside. I think we have a similar situation here as we have in the previous match-up either on of these players could end up in foul trouble. We are thinner at the post than So. Carolina is but with Stokes coming in to spell either Stewart or Tuck should they get in foul trouble what we lose in scoring power we make up for in defense. Stokes ability to rebound and block shots may be more on demand in this game and we must remember that Stokes seems to deliver when she is needed. But, back to the Coates vs Tuck match-up...I'm going to call this one SLIGHT ADVANTAGE Tuck.

Bench - South Carolina has a very deep bench and Geno will not go that deep into his bench. With Gabby and Saniya getting limited minutes and the rest of the crew possibly not playing at all...I give the ADVANTAGE to South Carolina.

Coaching - I think Staley is a great coach, I just think Geno and staff are better. The entire WCBB world seems to be in a hurry to crown Staley as Geno's successor as the premier women's basketball coach but I think those notions are premature. I give the coaching ADVANTAGE to UConn.

Intangibles - Home court, crowd, etc... ADVANTAGE UConn

UConn by 9: 83 - 74
I find it hard to believe that South Carolina who has all kinds of trouble scoring against anyone will suddenly score more points than their seasonal average against the 2nd ranked defense in college basketball. If they were able to score that money points, I would be stunned. It's possible that it will be a close game (though I don't think it will be) but if it is, it's likely to be because both defenses are playing well and UConn scores appreciably less than their seasonal average, as well. I'd like to think the score would be UConn 76-59 over SC.
 
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