UConn notebook: Kromah shows of versatility in win over Loyola

110813_uconn_600When Kevin Ollie and his coaches are on the recruiting trail the one thing they are always looking for are versatile guards. UConn got an added bonus to its line up this year with graduate student Lasan Kromah transferring in from George Washington for one season.

Kromah, a 6-foot-5 guard, brings a little of everything to the floor and Ollie has not been reluctant tapping into his abilities. Against Indiana, Kromah was called on to slow down point guard Yogi Ferrell in the second half. Against Loyola on Tuesday at the XL Center, Kromah flashed some of his offensive skills with a season-high 12 points in the 76-66 victory.

“Any way I can help my team out, points or defense,” said Kromah, who was 5-for-8 shooting with three rebounds, three assists and a steal in 21 minutes. “Tonight it was a little bit of offense and defense, so it felt pretty good.”

Just like a boy scout, Kromah always has to be prepared for the call off the bench from Ollie. Tuesday, he finished 5-for-8 shooting with three rebounds, three assists and a steal in 21 minutes.

“When I get in the game I’m just trying to add energy, and pick up the pace from where ever we are at,” said Kromah, who was a three-year starter at GW. “I make sure whoever I am coming in for keep it the same level or increase the energy and come in trying to help the team out.”

The transition from starter to off the bench has been something Kromah has accepted.

“It does give you a little bit different perspective seeing how a team starts out, how to play certain guys,” he said. “Definitely, it does help help when you come into the game.”

Ollie said Kromah has the ability to play all over the floor, and that along with a depth bench, gives the Huskies all sorts of options during a game.

“It gives me versatility on the bench, I can have him come in for the 3 spot, Omar,” Ollie said. “I can come in with him at the point and move Bazz around. … He just gives us so much verstilialty and that’s what I want our guards tobe and that’s what I keep recruiting for.”

SHARING THE WEALTH: It’s hard to say Shabazz Napier had an off night when he still finished with four points, seven rebounds, seven assists, three blocks and three steals in 33 minutes. But, on the scoring end several other Huskies – four players were in double figures – helped pick up the load a game after Napier dropped a season-high 27 in the 2K Sports Classic championship against Indiana.

“Any time we get other people to step up and score, it’s good,” said Ryan Boatright, who had 13 points, eight rebounds and five assist. “It gets their confidence going and you never know when you are going to need that third man or fourth man to step up, and for their confidence to be high, it’s a good thing.”


William Paxton