UConn women rout Hartford

STORRS, Conn. — If not for the red jersey and the coach on their sideline, Sunday would have been just another cold dissection of an opening-round opponent by the UConn women.

Southern, Vermont, Cornell, Maryland-Baltimore County and Coppin State; you've seen one, you've mourned them all.

But this was Hartford and Jen Rizzotti. This was a friendly neighbor and one of UConn's beloved daughters over for a Sunday visit on a sunny March morning. If they could, they would have had coffee — in NCAA sanctioned mugs, of course.

Familiarity is what separated the events at Gampel Pavilion from the regularly scheduled episode of CSI: NCAA Tournament that normally takes place at this stage of March Madness.

The No. 1 UConn women did what was expected. They opened a 23-point lead at the half and completed a business-as-usual 75-39 win over the No. 16 Hawks in the first round of the Philadelphia Regional.

There were few fireworks in the course of this comparatively muted romp. The Huskies neatly stacked five players in double-figures, Stefanie Dolson (12 points, seven rebounds), Bria Hartley (12 points). Maya Moore (12 points), Kelly Faris (10 points, six rebounds) and Tiffany Hayes (10 points).

Baylor 66, Prairie View 30

At Waco, Texas, Brittney Griner and top-seeded Baylor took Prairie View to a record-breaking NCAA tournament low.

Griner and Brooklyn Pope each had 17 points as the Lady Bears opened the NCAA tournament at home with the expected lopsided victory on Sunday night when Prairie View's miserable shooting translated into the lowest-scoring half ever in the tournament.

Things couldn't have gone any worse for SWAC champion Prairie View (21-12), which missed its first 12 shots before Waco native Robin Jones finally made a layup more than 9 minutes into the game. Baylor (32-2) already had a 16-0 lead by then.

The Lady Bears, who went to the Final Four last season when the 6-foot-8 Griner was a freshman, led 34-8 at halftime. That was the fewest points ever by any women's team in an NCAA tournament game — yet still five points more than the lowest mark in a regular-season game.

Prairie View was only 3-of-27 shooting before halftime, and finished 12 of 60 (20 percent). The 30 total points were the third-lowest in an NCAA women's tournament game.

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