Point of Emphasis

One of the key points of UConn's late game strategy was to keep the ball out of the hands of West Virginia senior playmaker Darris Nichols. While they were successful at times, it wasn't enough to keep the Mountaineers from recording a 78-72 win.

The Huskies mounted their one rally of the second half by applying full court pressure against West Virginia with the focus of keeping the ball away from Nichols. Head coach Bob Huggins has noted frequently that having the ball in Nichols' hands is "a good feeling" because the Mountaineer senior rarely turns the ball over and makes a very high percentage of good decisions in running the offense.

Recognizing that, UConn head coach Jim Calhoun did everything he could to keep Nichols out of the West Virginia offense, and for about a three minute stretch late in the second half, was successful in doing so. West Virginia went through a shaky period against the full court press deployed by the Huskies, but were finally able to work through it and secure the win.

In this exclusive postgame interview, Nichols discusses WVU's response to that situation, shares thoughts on the play of Wellington Smith on defense, and looks forward to Friday night's semifinal game.

Darris Nichols - Windows Media

Darris Nichols - MP3


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