PHILADELPHIA | Breanna Stewart scored a career-high 37 points and Bria Hartley had 16 points and 11 assists, leading No. 1 Connecticut to its 28th straight win, 93-56 over Temple on Tuesday night.
The Huskies (22-0, 9-0 American Athletic Conference) shook off a rare early challenge to turn yet another game into a romp. Stewart made 10 of 11 shots in the first half and scored 25 points to thwart any hope the Owls had for pulling off the upset.
UConn center Stefanie Dolson had 11 points and 13 rebounds when she limped off the court with 8 minutes left. She had her right foot taped and did not return.
Rateska Brown led the Owls (10-10, 4-5) with 13 points.
For about 10 minutes, there was a hint of a surprise at refurbished McGonigle Hall, the home floor for some of Hall of Fame coach John Chaney's greatest teams.
The Owls turned a 22-15 hole into a 23-22 lead with 7:55 left in the first half. Taylor Robinson put Temple in front with an inside bucket that put the crowd on its feet.
Not for long.
Stewart put UConn back on top with a layup that sparked a 20-5 run. Stewart really got on a roll during the decisive stretch, scoring an easy bucket off Hartley's steal, a layup, and a 3-pointer for a 47-31 lead. She made 15 of 19 shots overall and 3 of 5 3-pointers.
Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis, who scored 18 points, hit a basket at the buzzer that lifted the Huskies to a 49-32 halftime lead. The Huskies missed 8 of 10 3-pointers and still shot 61 percent from the floor (18 of 23 inside the arc). Hartley, who had scored at least 30 points in each of her last three games, had nine points in the half.
Temple coach Tonya Cardoza and UConn's Gena Auriemma chatted for several minutes before the game, with six photographers snapping away at their conversation. Cardoza spent 14 seasons as an assistant at Connecticut, so she knew the challenges her team would face against the perfect Huskies.
The Owls did improve from their first game this season against UConn. They needed only a couple of baskets at the start of the second half to top their total from the first meeting, the Huskies' 80-36 win on Jan. 11.
Auriemma is 3-0 against Cardoza.
The 28-game winning streak would make national news at any other women's program. It's just another ho-hum hot streak at UConn — the seventh-longest winning streak in team history was only the seventh item on the school's game notes.