I’m among friends here so I’m just going to be honest with you: Pitt is not great at women’s basketball. Halfway through the second quarter they were shooting 7% from the field. It got to the point where the crowd was groaning when PITT missed a shot because it was painful to watch. In light of that Coach Walz chose to sit Asia Durr who tweaked her knee recently. However, she was available if needed.
She was not needed.
Dana Evans started in her place and had a game high 16 points to which she added 7 rebounds. Kylee Shook followed up her strong game at Florida State with 12 points and 7 rebounds. The bench got a lot of much-needed minutes as we start to head into the latter part of the season.
After the game Coach Walz said of sitting his star player, “With us playing UConn on Thursday it eliminates one of our bye weeks...within our conference so now we only have one. Asia’s been playing a ton of minutes for us and her knee was a little sore so [I said] if we can afford to do this I’m going to set you down.” Kylee Shook said, “It’s kind of nice to see how we do without her although it’s great having her clearly but just to get that experience.”
Coach Walz said, “I thought the first half was fantastic...We gave up 0 second chance points and gave up 2 offensive rebounds in the first. Because we tried. It was probably the best effort we put forth rebounding all year.” However, on the second half he said, “I guess they just decided to do what they thought was good and obviously that didn’t work out very good. [Pitt] had 7 second chance points in the 3rd quarter alone.”
Coach Walz said this week, “I told the players they’re going to watch the game. They’re going to come back and give us the break down of how they played, what they need to work on, and what they did well instead of us doing it for them. Every once in awhile I think it’s good for them to self-evaluate.” He added, “They get upset when we tell them ‘you want to play like this person.’ [They say] ‘oh I don’t want to be like that person. I want to be ME.’ I’m sitting here going when we go to high school games or when we watch games on film if somebody runs something that we think is good—we steal it. Like we’re not naive enough to think well that worked for them so let’s not do it here.”
As mentioned this Thursday #3 UConn travels to the Yum. Coach Walz said, “I think we’re like 0-62 against them since I’ve been here.” He added, “It’s going to be exciting. It’s a big game for both of us. So I’m hoping to get 16-18,000 in this place, have a great environment, and hopefully we’ll play well and it’s a great game for women’s basketball.” The game is at 7pm and will be on ESPN or ESPN2.