UConn Trounces Rutgers 87-70

Rutgers was simply no match for UConn's inside game. In the first half Rutgers simply fought and scrapped in the paint with the Huskies to stay in the game. In the second half, Rutgers just didn't have the legs left to keep up with the number 24 ranked team in the nation

 It was all Herve early. With UConn dominating boards it was only the exceptional offensive play of Herve Lamizana that kept the Knights in the game early. The Huskies owned the boards but Herve had the UConn faithful "oooing and ahhhhing" at his spectacular offensive scoring and passing ability. With fourteen minutes to go in the first half the Knights were within two at 13-11.

To help cope with the inside power game of the Huskies, Gary Waters sent in Kareem Wright but it was to no avail. Wright quickly picked up two fouls and had to sit. Adrian Hill took his place and tried to jam UConn's Emeka Okafor in the paint but the Huskies just took their game outside. Consecutive three pointers by Denham Brown and Ben Gordon put UConn ahead by six (19-13) at the twelve minute mark.

The Knights and UConn traded points until Tony Robertson hit a three for UConn with nine and half minutes to go to extend their lead to 24-15.

The Knights played tough though. A jumper by Adrian Hill followed by some ferocious board play by the undersized Knights led to a three point play by Mike Sherrod to cut the Husky lead to four with six minutes to go. The Knights couldn't maintain the intensity and with four and a half to go UConn came right back and extended their lead back to nine.

Again, the Knights rallied using tough defense and smart offense capped off by a beautiful baseline move by Lamizana and a driving two pointer by Jerome Coleman off a steal. That brought the Knights to back within two points with just three minutes to go in the first half. Then bad news hit the Knights, Herve had to sit with two fouls. Relying only on Jerome Coleman for offense Rutgers could only manage to keep the Husky lead down to six (41-35) by half time.

At the halfway mark Lamizana led the Knights with 10 points. Jerome Coleman had 7. Ben Gordon led the Huskies with 10. The Huskies were hitting 50% of their shots from three point range.

Ben Gordon opened the scoring for UConn with a three in the second half. Rutgers and UConn traded twos but a minute later a three by Denham Brown had the Husky  lead up to 12.

The Knights could do little to cut into that lead and, in fact, the Scarlet seemed to have tired legs. By the 14:30 mark UConn had pushed up its lead to 16 points at 63-47 and the Knights were playing disorganized, "step too slow" basketball.  By the seven and a half minute mark the Huskies led 78-58.

After that there was one stretch resembling a run. Rutgers cut it to 12 with a little over two minutes to go on a 8-0 run keyed by four different Rutgers scorers. George Blaney, subbing for UConn head coach Jim Calhoun, took the air out of the ball for the last couple of minutes of the game.  The final score UConn 87 - Rutgers 70.

Herve Lamizana led Rutgers with 20 points, including 8 of 12 from the field.  Mike Sherrod had 10, Jerome Coleman finished with 7.

Tony Robertson led all scorers with 24.

Recap / Box Score

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