"My rule was I wouldn't recruit a kid if he had grass in front of his house.
That's not my world. My world was a cracked sidewalk." —Al McGuire

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Marquette Wins at UConn


What a difference a game makes.

The Marquette Golden Eagles flew into Storrs tonight and beat the UConn Huskies 73-69. The win ended UConn's 31 game home court winning streak. With the win, Marquette became the first team in Big East history to win its inaugural game at Gampel Pavillion. MU improved to 14-4 on the season and 1-2 in Big East play with the win.

MU was led by the strong play of Ousmane Barro, who turned in his third double-double of the season with a 17 point, 13 rebound effort. Jerel McNeal led MU with 19 points, while Dominic James had 17 points. Wesley Matthews had 10 points to go along with eight rebounds. Freshman Doug Wiggins paced UConn with 19 points.

With UConn struggling in the first half, MU took a four-point lead into the break. The key sequence in the game came with 10 minutes remaining and the scored tied at46. Then MU dialed up the defense and defensive rebounding -- and UConn missed its next 13 shots from the field as the Golden Eagles laid down a 16-2 run to extend their lead to 62-48.

Marquette was tougher, more aggressive and more determined than the Huskies tonight. MU held the Huskies to just 32% shooting in the game, and out-rebounded the much bigger Husky squad 44-38.

Here is the AP recap.

Here is the box score.

Here is Rosiak's recap.

Here are the Hartford Courant's post-game notes.

Here's the Courant's game recap.

Here are the GoMarquette.com game notes.

Meanwhile, according to The Day the Golden Knights beat UConn last night :-)


Gene Frenkle said...

I'll take any conference win I can get...especially on the road...at UConn. I don't care if they are young. This was a must win for MU, especially w/how gawd-awful UConn looked in the first half (and MU STILL only led by 4).

Ous was huge. Wesley again taking it strong to the hoop. McNeal again hitting that little ten-foot floater. James continuing to hawk up threes w/no abandon. Thankfully he hit what was probably the dagger in UConn's heart.

Almost gave it away at the end, but hit enough free throws to ice it.

I'll take the win and look forward to a team with confidence heading into Saturday's showdown with the 1-3-1 zone monster of W.Virginia. Let's hope the team attacks the hoop on Saturday like they did tonight.

Still too many turnovers, but again, a must win for MU considering their four game stretch coming up.

Have I mentioned your site is awesome! Thanks Cracked Sidewalks

Anonymous said...

Dominic James looked much more comfortable against the non-zone offense. He was able to penetrate and put up acceptable shots or make some dishes. He also seemed much more in the flow of the game and was able to run the break. He made some hustle plays and had some nice passes. And he came up with some points out of the poor shooting. Everything but his shooting was ok, which is improvement over the past couple games but not a fix of his biggest problem.

Ousmane Barro played a great game, especially in the first half with the foul trouble. He was pulling down rebounds and catching UConn's youngster's off guard by running on them and taking the fast break passes from James. He seemed to go up with authority and be willing to make contact instead of looking for a way to sneak in the lay-in. Easily his best game since he dominated Northwestern State. Granted Uconn's bigs are young and not yet in the same class as those of Providence or Syracuse, but hopefully Ooze can learn to bring this game against those tougher frontcourts. He had the most experience of any big on the floor and Uconn doesn't have any scholarship juniors, and Ooze seemed to play like he knew it.

McNeal is the sparkplug, and they would be lost without him. If only he could cut down on a couple turnovers a game it could really help the offense.

At least good to see Burke thinking about scoring offensively. If he keeps it up the points will fall eventually. 5 points is amazing for him as it is, but you can't score if you don't shoot and he tried to score tonight. He's a player that is definately capable of a double-double with regular minutes, and hopefully he'll be able to reach that potential. His reputation for hard work and Tom Crean calling on the players to put in extra time in their workouts may have something to do with his increased playing time and his success. Many of his mistakes are things that can't be fixed without playing time, and if it's not a liability on the floor he will continue to get more of it. He probably wishes he could play Uconn every game.

If anyone on the team could shoot the 3, Fitzgerald would get about as many minutes as Kinsella. It's a talent to pick up as many fouls as he does in so little playing time.

Hayward is obviously going to help make this team more successful, but it's hard to see what his role is right now. His post play isn't superb and it's pretty selfish, seeming to always go up with a blocked shot or bad miss and sometimes getting himself a second chance. His perimeter shot hasn't even been tried lately and his defense still hasn't come around.

The inbounds plays have been terrible since conference play started. It seems like inbounds situations are being taken for granted amidst shooting and offensive problems and hopefully they can work it out in practice.

Some smart, tough play tonight. UConn might be the more talented team and they were at home, but Marquette showed a ton of maturity against a rare less-experienced team tonight. It was great to see Barro and Burke come through big time with the three guards having average games and the freshmen not showing up, but it's hard to believe either has a great game against a better frontcourt. Good enough free throw shooting, still some problems from the field and this game can't ease any concerns about playing against zones. You can't complain about a road win in the Big East.

Anonymous said...

I was at the game and they won't be sending the tape to the basketball hall of fame... However, MU showed a lot of heart and grit. They responed well when UCONN went on a mini run to start the second half and took the crowd out. Switching to the zone really shut down the Huskies. I think they turned off the intensity too early and UCONN did the right thing in fouling at the end. Great effort by all our guys, however James shot from the outside too much. Nice win.

Anonymous said...

Article by The Day is pretty funny, but it dredges up bad feelings again about a changing identity.

Anonymous said...

in that "theDay.com" article, I'm really enjoying Dan Fitzgerald's marvelous foul on Doug Wiggins. What was he thinking? It's just too bad he hadn't honed his sharpshooter skills between seasons like Novak did for last year . . .

Also.... is it just me, or are we being called the Golden "knights" on purpose? Come on, UConn--it's not like we didn't beat you last year :-d you should know our name by now.

Anonymous said...

One of these decades, our fantastic nickname is sure to catch on.

What a pathetic situation Marquette is in!! Go back to Warriors!!!