© St. Petersburg Times, published January 19, 2003
HARTFORD, Conn. -- Connecticut made history Saturday -- then celebrated as if it won a national championship.
The third-ranked Huskies (16-0) got 22 points from All-America junior Diana Taurasi and overcame a poor first-half shooting performance in a 72-49 win over Georgetown (11-3) for their 55th straight win, surpassing the mark of 54 set by Louisiana Tech from 1980-82.
With 30 seconds left, the 16,294 at the Hartford Civic Center began a standing ovation that lasted well after the final buzzer. The team gathered midcourt and received T-shirts and caps marking the milestone victory.
"We're the first team ever to do it," Taurasi said. "I think it feels great and now we can put it behind us. I think we set a new standard of play."
UConn went 39-0 and won its third national title in seven years last season. Its last loss was March 30, 2001, a 90-75 setback to eventual national champion Notre Dame in the NCAA semifinals.
"Winning 55 in a row, that's pretty special in any sport," Taurasi said. "It ranks up there.
"A little bit behind the national championship, but it's up there."
UCLA holds the Division I men's record of 88 from 1971-74. In the past three seasons, the Huskies have a 123-4 record under coach Geno Auriemma, in his 18th season.
NO. 6 STANFORD 77, WASH. 63: Nicole Powell had 19 points and 12 rebounds as the Cardinal (14-1) won its 20th straight at home. Giuliana Mendiola led the Huskies (13-3) with 14 points and five rebounds. Powell had four points and an assist during an 8-0 run that broke a tie at 52.
NO. 7 TEXAS TECH 95, OSU 45: Jia Perkins scored 16 as the host Raiders (15-1) won their 15th straight. Trisha Skibbe led Oklahoma State (5-10) with 16 points. Tech started a 15-0 run three minutes in for a 22-6 lead and led 43-18 at halftime.
NO. 11 LA. TECH 63, FRESNO ST. 53: Amber Obaze scored 22 and Cheryl Ford had 18 rebounds and 11 points for the visiting Techsters (12-2). Omelogo Udeze hit two free throws with 12:09 left to give the Bulldogs (9-7) a one-point lead, but Louisiana Tech countered with a 12-1 run.
NO. 16 WIS-GREEN BAY 61, WIS-MILWAUKEE 60: Kristy Loiselle scored the winning basket with three seconds left for the visiting Phoenix. Chandra Johnson scored 16 for Green Bay (15-2). Kimberly Becker scored 18 for the Panthers (6-10), who had 22 turnovers.
NO. 19 VILLANOVA 58, SETON HALL 52: Trish Juhline scored 19 of her game-high 24 in the second half to lead the host Wildcats. Villanova (13-2) trailed by as much as 13 in the first half and faced a 25-17 halftime deficit.
NO. 20 TEXAS 70, BAYLOR 50: Heather Schreiber had 23 points and 14 rebounds as the host Longhorns (11-4) gave Jody Conradt her 799th victory. A win Wednesday night over Texas Tech will make her the second women's coach to reach 800 behind Tennessee's Pat Summitt.
RUTGERS 64, NO. 21 ND 61: Cappie Pondexter hit a 12-foot jumper with 26 seconds left as the visiting Scarlet Knights (9-4) rallied from a 15-point second-half deficit. Rutgers held the Irish (10-5) scoreless for 6:37 to cut the lead to 50-48. It moved ahead 61-59 with 1:41 left.
NO. 22 ARIZONA 80, UCLA 61: Dee-Dee Wheeler scored 27 to lead the host Wildcats (12-4). Arizona built a 42-23 halftime lead, holding the Bruins (11-5) to 27 percent shooting from the field.
NO. 23 OU 77, TEXAS A&M 39: Maria Villarroel scored 21 as the host Sooners (11-5) held the Aggies to 25 percent shooting. Toccara Williams scored 12 to lead Texas A&M (8-7).
SYRACUSE 76, NO. 24 BC 71: Julie McBride was 9-for-10 at the free-throw line in the final 53 seconds and finished with 23 points for Syracuse (6-10). Amber Jacobs scored 20 for Boston College (11-4), which had its 15-game home winning streak snapped.
UT 61, ROLLINS 52: Yushonda Morse had 16 points and eight rebounds for the host Spartans (14-3), who moved into first in the Sunshine State Conference. Jennie Brown led Rollins (13-3) with eight points.