UConn exploits big advantage
Connecticut played an unfamiliar foe yesterday that confused the Huskies on defense and had the shooters to stick with them on offense.
But Michigan didn't have Hasheem Thabeet, who scored 17 points, pulled down 12 rebounds, and blocked 6 shots as the top-ranked Huskies held off the Wolverines, 69-61, in Storrs, Conn., for their 11th straight win.
"We played great and we kind of now know what to expect during the NCAA Tournament, and we're happy with this," said Thabeet, a 7-foot-3-inch junior.
Jerome Dyson led UConn (22-1) with 19 points and Jeff Adrien had 9 points and 14 rebounds. Adrien's final rebound gave him 1,000 for his career, making the former Brookline High standout just the fifth player in school history to score 1,000 points and grab 1,000 rebounds.
"I've come from a player who couldn't play at high Division 1, and now I'm here," said Adrien. "It's an honor."
Stu Douglas hit six 3-pointers and scored 20 points to lead Michigan (15-9). The Wolverines switched from their normal 1-3-1 zone to a 2-3 and forced 10 first-half turnovers. Michigan went on a 9-0 run that turned a 21-20 deficit into a 29-21 lead. The Huskies closed the half on a 12-5 run to cut the deficit to 34-33.
UConn trailed, 43-39, before scoring the next 9 points take the lead for good.
The schools hadn't met since 1939, when Michigan won, 62-45.
Oklahoma 77, Colorado 72 - Blake Griffin recorded his 20th double-double of the season with 26 points and 12 rebounds, and Tony Crocker added 24 points off seven 3-pointers to buoy the No. 2 Sooners in Norman, Okla.
Oklahoma (23-1, 9-0 Big 12) didn't shake free of the last-place Buffaloes (9-13, 1-7) until Griffin followed Crocker's fifth 3-pointer by driving for a righthanded dunk over two defenders. The basket gave Oklahoma its first double-digit lead, 56-45, with less than 11 minutes to play.
North Carolina 76, Virginia 61 - The third-ranked Tar Heels (21-2, 7-2 ACC) relied on their star power to shake off a slow start at home. Wayne Ellington tallied 20 points, Tyler Hansbrough finished with 15 points and 13 rebounds, and Ty Lawson scored all 10 of his points during a game-breaking run.
Danny Green added 17 points as North Carolina warmed up for Wednesday's matchup with Duke by winning its seventh straight. The Tar Heels shot 50 percent from the field over the final 20 minutes and used a 29-11 spurt that bridged halftime to bury the Cavaliers (7-12, 1-7).
Duke 78, Miami 75 - The fourth-ranked Blue Devils (20-3, 7-2 ACC) trailed by 16 points in the second half, but Gerald Henderson scored 18 of his 19 points after the break to rally the hosts to an overtime victory.
Henderson scored the go-ahead basket with 3:16 left in overtime and hit a stepback jumper to make it a 6-point game with 51.9 seconds to play. Jon Scheyer led the Blue Devils with 22 points, while Jack McClinton scored a season-best 34 points for Miami (15-8, 4-6).
Pittsburgh 92, DePaul 69 - The No. 6 Panthers closed the first half on a 13-0 run, and DeJuan Blair and Levance Fields made sure Pitt had it easy the rest of the way in Rosemont, Ill.
Blair scored a career-high 32 points on 14-of-23 shooting, and grabbed 14 rebounds. Fields had a personal-best 16 assists for Pitt (21-2, 8-2 Big East), which handed the Blue Demons (8-16, 0-11) their 11th straight loss.
Duquesne 72, Xavier 68 - Aaron Jackson (21 points) made five free throws in the final minute, and the Dukes (15-7, 6-3 Atlantic 10) held on in Pittsburgh to end an 11-game winning streak by the No. 9 Musketeers (20-3, 8-1).
Florida St. 65, Clemson 61 - Trailing by 15 with nine minutes to go, the visiting Seminoles (18-5, 5-3 ACC) upset the No. 10 Tigers (19-3, 5-3) by closing on a 23-4 run, during which Toney Douglas scored 12 of his 23 points.
Butler 69, Wright St. 51 - Zach Hahn set a career high with 17 points and the No. 11 Bulldogs (21-2, 12-1 Horizon) broke a seven-game losing streak at the Nutter Center in Dayton, Ohio.
Michigan St. 75, Indiana 47 - At East Lansing, Mich., Draymond Green had season highs of 15 points and 12 rebounds in a blowout for the No. 13 Spartans (19-4, 9-2 Big Ten).
Memphis 68, Gonzaga 50 - Tyreke Evans led the 14th-ranked Tigers (20-3) with 22 points, and the visitors held the No. 18 Bulldogs (17-5) to their lowest output of the season.
UCLA 89, Notre Dame 63 - The No. 15 Bruins (19-4) earned their fourth straight blowout victory, getting 19 points from Alfred Aboya, while the visiting Fighting Irish (12-10) dropped their seventh in a row - Notre Dame's longest skid since 1992-93.
Nebraska 58, Texas 55 - At Lincoln, Neb., Ade Dagunduro had 17 points, including a 3-pointer with 50 seconds left that gave the Cornhuskers (15-7, 5-4 Big 12) a 4-point lead and sealed a third straight defeat for the No. 16 Longhorns (15-7, 4-4).
Villanova 102, Syracuse 85 - The 17th-ranked Wildcats (19-4, 7-3 Big East) blasted the No. 20 Orange (18-6, 6-5) from the start in Philadelphia, building a double-digit lead in the opening minutes. Dante Cunningham tied his career high with 31 points in Villanova's fifth consecutive win.
Ohio St. 64, Minnesota 58 - Evan Turner made seven free throws in the final 64 seconds and the host Buckeyes (17-5, 7-4 Big Ten) topped the No. 19 Golden Gophers (18-5, 6-5) for their fifth win this season over a ranked opponent.
Kansas 78, Oklahoma St. 67 - Cole Aldrich had 12 points and a career-high 18 rebounds as the No. 21 Jayhawks (19-4, 8-0 Big 12) handled the Cowboys (14-8, 3-5) to stretch the nation's longest home winning streak to 37.
Arizona St. 49, Oregon St. 38 - Jeff Pendergraph (15 points) and the No. 24 Sun Devils (17-5, 6-4 Pac-10) won their fourth consecutive conference road game.
Utah St. 60, Louisiana Tech 52 - Gary Wilkinson scored 16 points and the No. 25 Aggies (23-1, 11-0 WAC) held on at home for their 18th win in a row.