With perhaps their most important two-game set this season, the UConn Huskies looked to take first place in the Big East with a sweep over the Denver Pioneers in a weekend matchup at home. While UConn fought hard, the Huskies ultimately fell in two tough matchups against a tough Pioneers lineup, with the first game going to a surprising triple overtime matchup. It was a disappointing set of games for the Huskies that brings their record down to 8-4 and 4-2 in Big East play.
Game 1: Denver 14, UConn 13 (3 OT)
In Game 1 of UConn’s matchup, UConn looked great in this matchup and truly battled against No. 22 Denver. Unfortunately, Denver was able to get past the tough UConn defense and win off a goal from Bea Behrins. While the Huskies were not victorious in this matchup, they certainly did not go down without a fight. Sydney Watson showed out in this matchup and once again proved her talent on the field with five goals and 10 draw controls. Grace Coon looked outstanding in this matchup with four goals and four draw controls for the Huskies. Finally, Lia LaPrise was major for the Huskies offense with seven assists and a goal on the day to lead the Huskies in points.
Game 2: Denver 11, UConn 7
In the final matchup of UConn’s two-game set with Denver, the Pioneers came to play and attacked a Huskies team that looked much worse than they had previously this season.
In the first period, UConn kept up with Denver, and due to goals by Abby Vetsch, Sam McKenna and Kyra Place, they were able to take a one-point lead going into the second period. The second period was all Denver as they erupted for eight goals to overtake UConn and win the matchup. With hat tricks from both Behrins and Julia Gilbert, the Pioneers certainly looked impressive on offense and bombarded goalkeeper Landyn White. Alongside Denver’s offense, UConn was only able to score three times in the second half as Denver shut them down throughout the second half.
Despite the efforts of McKenna and Vetsch, the Huskies would fall 11-7 to the Pioneers and looked lost without the huge offensive performances of players like Watson and LaPrise.
With these two wins, Denver increased their overall record to 8-1 and Big East record to 6-0 and got even closer to clinching first place in the Big East. The Pioneers look to increase their record even more against the Marquette Golden Eagles next week in a Big East two-game weekend matchup. For the Huskies, they’re looking to keep up with the Pioneers and sweep Villanova in in another Big East two-game weekend matchup on the road.