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Kelli Stacy | The Hartford Courant | December 22, 2018

UConn women’s basketball: What you need to know about Huskies’ game vs. Cal

Andy Katz calls for a Notre Dame repeat as national champs in women's hoops

After a close call at Oklahoma, UConn is headed to Katie Lou Samuelson's home state to take on Cal in the Huskies final game of 2018.

RELATED: NCAA women's basketball tournament dates, schedule

The game will be UConn's 11th of the season and their second to last before conference play begins. They will get time off after Saturday's game for the holidays, then they'll head to Texas the first week of 2019.

Here's everything you need to know about their game against Cal:

Site: Haas Pavilion

Day/time: Saturday, 3 p.m. ET

Series: UConn leads 4-1

Last meeting: Nov. 17, 2017

TV: Pac-12 Network

Radio: 97.9 ESPN

Cal (9-0)

Probable starters: Asha Thomas, G, 5-4, Sr.; Jaelyn Brown, G/F, 6-1, Jr.; Kristine Anigwe, C/F, 6-4, Sr.; Kianna Smith, G, 6-0, So.; Recee Caldwell, G, 5-9, Gr.

Offense: Cal's offense has been led by an impressive effort from Kristine Angiwe, who's fifth in the nation in scoring. Angiwe doesn't get much help, with Kianna Smith and Asha Thomas averaging just above 10 points each. Other players have showed up in flashes, but Angiwe has been the only consistent scorer.

Defense: Angiwe has been dominant on both sides of the ball for Cal, but it's her rebounding that's been a huge asset. She's averaging 13.7 rebounds per game and is the only player in the nation to have a double-double in every game this season. In their closest game of the season -- an overtime win against Saint Mary's -- it was Cal's perimeter defense that was lacking, so if UConn can get back to the successful 3-point shooting team they generally are, Cal might be in trouble.

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About the coach: Lindsay Gottlieb has been the head coach at Cal for eight years. She had the most wins for a Cal women's basketball coach in a six-year period.

UConn (10-0)

Probable starters: Napheesa Collier, F, 6-1, Sr.; Crystal Dangerfield, G, 5-5, Jr.; Katie Lou Samuelson,G/F, 6-3, Sr.; Megan Walker, G/F, 6-1, So.; Christyn Williams, G, 5-11, Fr.

Offense: Usually a good shooting team, UConn struggled to get shots to fall against Oklahoma on Wednesday night. The Huskies were out of sync offensively after an extended period of time between games, but coach Geno Auriemma said he thinks his team will settle down against Cal.

Defense: UConn's defense wasn't great against Oklahoma either, though the Huskies have improved since the beginning of the season. With one game under their belts after the break, and the continued improvement to Megan Walker's health, the Huskies should be back to normal on Saturday.

Key to the game: Staying calm. Cal is going to be a challenge for the Huskies, so they'll need to regain their composure more quickly than they did against Oklahoma. 

This article is written by Kelli Stacy from The Hartford Courant and was legally licensed via the Tribune Content Agency through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@newscred.com.

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