Providence - Stefanie Dolson entered the new year having never been named Big East Player of the Week before. By Monday, she had already earned her second such honor.
"A lot of the stuff we do goes through her," UConn women's basketball coach Geno Auriemma said of Dolson, the team's 6-foot-5 junior center.
"She just has a real knack for the game. She's really comfortable right now and has a pretty good understanding of when to shoot and when to pass. We all trust her that she's going to make the right decision and we just are not the same team when she's not out on the floor."
Dolson scored 23 points in 24 minutes of Sunday's 91-44 victory over DePaul at Gampel Pavilion and added six assists and five rebounds. She was 6-for-8 shooting, 10-for-11 from the free throw line.
Today, No. 3 UConn (22-1 overall, 9-1 Big East Conference) takes on Providence College beginning at 7 p.m. at 2,620-seat Alumni Hall in Providence (SNY). Providence is 7-16 overall, 2-8 in the conference.
Last week, Dolson led the Huskies to a 2-0 record, averaging 19 points and 4.5 rebounds per game while shooting 75 percent. Against Marquette, she had 15 points, four blocks and two steals. Against DePaul, Dolson set a career high with 10 free throws made.
Heading into today's game, sophomore forward Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis is leading UConn in scoring with 16.8 points per game and Breanna Stewart is the leader in rebounds with 6.9 per game, while Dolson is second in scoring (14.2 ppg) and rebounding (6.5 rpg). Dolson leads the country in field goal percentage at .623.
"I'm really thrilled for her with how far she's come and there's no one I see playing who I think is playing better than she's playing right now," Auriemma said of Dolson.
UConn will also play at Rutgers this week before the Huskies take on top-ranked Baylor next Monday at the XL Center.
Providence, under first-year coach Susan Robinson Fruchtl, is led by 5-7 senior guard Symone Roberts of New Britain. Roberts is averaging 14.8 points per game.