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UConn assistant leaves team after relative’s positive test

NCAA Womens Basketball: Tulane at Connecticut

Feb 19, 2020; Hartford, Connecticut, USA; UConn Huskies assistant coach Shea Ralph reacts as the team comes off the court before the start of the game against the Tulane Green Wave at XL Center. UConn defeated Tulane 74-31. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

STORRS, Conn. -- UConn assistant coach Shea Ralph has decided to leave the women’s basketball team in San Antonio and head home after a family member tested positive for COVID-19.

The school said Wednesday that Ralph has tested negative for the virus every day since March 9, but left the team and the NCAA Tournament bubble out of an abundance of caution.

The move comes two days after head coach Geno Auriemma announced he had tested positive for the coronavirus and would be self-isolating in Connecticut until at least March 24.

UConn’s team doctor said Monday that Auriemma had a very low viral load and it was highly unlikely he transmitted the virus to anyone else in the program.

Associate head coach Chris Dailey, who is 10-0 in her career while filling in for Auriemma, has stepped in to lead the top-ranked Huskies, who will open tournament play on Sunday night against High Point.

With Ralph’s departure, Jamelle Elliott will be UConn’s only assistant on the bench. Elliott played on UConn’s first championship team in 1995, is a former head coach at Cincinnati and is in her second stint on Auriemma’s staff. She was also an assistant from 1998-2009, helping UConn to five other national championships.