Game No. 5 UConn-DePaul postponed due to lack of players

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uconn depaul

uconn depaul

STORRS, Conn. – The Big East game between No. 5 UConn and DePaul on Sunday at Gampel Pavilion in Storrs, Connecticut, has been canceled because the Huskies do not have enough healthy players to suit up, the conference said Friday.

The conference requires schools to field seven scholarship players for any given game, and injuries have left the Huskies with only six active players, the school said.

UConn was also expected to be without head coach Geno Auriemma, who announced Thursday that he is taking some time off to recover from an illness.

Junior Aaliyah Edwards and freshman Ayanna Patterson were injured in UConn’s win at Xavier on Thursday. They join sophomore Caroline Ducharme, sophomore Azzi Fudd, junior Paige Bueckers and freshman Ice Brady on the inactive list.

Edwards suffered what was alternately described as a right leg or ankle injury in the first half of the Huskies’ 73-37 win, diving over some courtside seats for a loose ball. It was not immediately clear when or how Patterson was injured.

The school said it would not release further information Friday night.

“At UConn, the health and well-being of our student-athletes will always be our top priority,” David Benedict, the school’s director of athletics, said in a statement. “Unfortunately our women’s basketball program has had an unprecedented number of injuries this season. While it is unfortunate that we have to cancel Sunday’s game, it is the right call to protect the safety of our student athletes. We will work with the Big East and DePaul on options to reschedule the game.”

Buekers and Brady are out for the season with knee injuries.

Fudd, the Huskies’ leading scorer, is expected to return soon from a knee injury that has kept her on the bench since she was injured in a collision with Edwards during the Dec. 4 loss to Notre Dame. She has participated in warm-ups in the last three games as part of her rehabilitation.

Guard Caroline Ducharme has missed two games while in the concussion protocol after being injured in practice.

Among the Huskies currently available are guards Nika Muhl, Lou Lopez Senechal, Ines Bettencourt and forwards Aubrey Griffin, Dorka Juhasz and Amari DeBerry.

Auriemma has missed four games this season due to illness, and it is unclear when he might return.

“It’s been a really tough month for me, and I’ve been feeling under the weather and run down,” Auriemma said in a statement Thursday. “I thought I was ready to come back , but I need a little more time. I’m going to take a step back to focus on my health and I’ll come back when I’m ready.”

Despite the injuries, the Huskies have won six in a row.

The school says those who have tickets to Sunday’s game will be able to use them when the game is rescheduled.

UConn is expected to play the following night at St. John’s on Wednesday, and DePaul is scheduled to host Villanova that night.

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