No. 1 Huskies Pound No. 19 Pitt
Feb. 15, 2009
STORRS, Conn. (AP) -Renee Montgomery scored 20 points and No. 1 Connecticut raced to a 19-point lead in the first 5 1/2 minutes en route to a 95-42 victory over No. 19 Pittsburgh on Sunday.
It was a special day for Montgomery as she became the first active player in UConn history to have her jersey put up in the Huskies of Honor. Her No. 20 is alongside such greats as Diana Taurasi, Sue Bird and Jennifer Rizzotti. Montgomery's only the 11th player to receive the honor.
Connecticut (25-0, 11-0 Big East) scored the game's first seven points before Shayla Scott hit a 3-pointer for Pitt. UConn then went on a 15-0 run that included five points by Montgomery to build a 22-3 lead just 5 minutes into the game.
Shavonte Zellous scored 16 points to lead the Panthers (18-5, 8-3), who never recovered and could only get within 16 points the rest of the game.
Maya Moore added her 14th double-double of the season with 18 points and 12 rebounds for the Huskies, while Tina Charles had 18 points and 11 rebounds, and Kalana Greene had 11 points and 11 rebounds. It was second time Connecticut had three players with double-doubles. Tiffany Hayes scored 15 points, marking the 11th time this season UConn has had five players score in double figures.
Montgomery was completely surprised when she was honored before the game. She was mobbed by her teammates and was beaming as her parents, who had flown in from West Virginia, came out to midcourt to celebrate along with the nearly 10,000 fans in attendance.
Montgomery is the third player in UConn history to have 1,500 points and 500 assists in her career. She's only 239 points short of becoming the sixth player at UConn to reach 2,000.
Montgomery has been a huge reason that UConn has gotten off to its best start since winning the first 31 games of 2002-03. The Huskies have won 33 straight regular-season games and are the only unbeaten team in Division I.
Pitt hasn't beaten Connecticut in the last 24 meetings. The Panthers last topped the Huskies 76-74 on Feb. 24, 1993. Pitt ended a 13-game losing streak to Rutgers in its last game on Tuesday night, winning 61-53 in overtime.
The Panthers were out of this game quickly, unable to contain the Huskies. They didn't score consecutive baskets until nearly 12 minutes had gone by in the first half. Pitt's mini 7-0 spurt cut the deficit to 28-12, but Moore quickly answered with a 3-pointer and Connecticut was off and running again.
UConn led 47-21 at halftime and saw its lead balloon to 53 points in the second half. It wasn't even Pitt's worst loss to UConn, the Huskies beat the Panthers 112-43 in 2002.
The Huskies, including the coaching staff, wore pink sneakers in honor of breast cancer awareness and the Kay Yow Cancer Fund. UConn's uniforms had a special pink trim while Pittsburgh wore completely pink uniforms.