UConn Basketball

with Kevin Duffy

Villanova 70, UConn 61

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Just three days after it knocked off No. 6 Syracuse, UConn played an uninspiring second half and fell 70-61 to unranked Villanova at the XL Center.

STAR OF THE GAME: Villanova freshman guard Ryan Arcidiacono scored 17 of his game-high 25 points in the first half. He hit a few 3-pointers and handed out assists —including an alley-oop from midcourt to James Bell — during a critical Wildcats run that opened up the lead.

KEY TO THE LOSS: Villanova, tops in the Big East in rebounding, hammered the Huskies on the glass, grabbing 12 of its 20 offensive boards in the second half. The Huskies, meanwhile, did not record a single offensive rebound in the first half. Villanova finished with a 41-25 edge.

*Villanova went on a 16-2 run to claim a 52-45 advantage midway through the second half. The Wildcats, dominating on the interior and limiting UConn’s guards, kept the lead the rest of the way. James Bell hit a 3-pointer with 1:30 left to put Villanova ahead, 67-57.

*Ryan Boatright, superb versus Syracuse, struggled mightily Saturday. He was held scoreless until 51.5 seconds remained and his backcourt counterpart, Shabazz Napier, scored just two points while dishing out 10 assists. Together, the dynamic duo was 3-for-15 from the floor and 0-for-7 from 3-point range.

*Omar Calhoun led UConn with 16 points and six rebounds.

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