No. 21 UConn Travels To Philadelphia To Meet Temple On Thursday
February 20, 2014INDIANA SPORTS PAGE
UCONN SPORTS RELEASE
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - The No. 21 University of Connecticut men's basketball team hits the road for an American Athletic Conference showdown with Temple set for Thursday, Feb. 20 at 9 p.m. at the Liacouras Center. The game can be seen on ESPN2 with Mike Patrick and Bruce Pearl on the call and can be heard live on the UConn IMG Sports Radio Network.
The Huskies (20-5) are coming off a thrilling overtime win against then-ranked No. 20 Memphis on Saturday at the XL Center. Senior guard Shabazz Napier (Roxbury, Mass.) posted one of the best games in his Husky tenure, tallying a career-best 34 points on 10-of-21 shooting and adding four steals. Junior guard Ryan Boatright (Aurora, Ill.) connected for a season-best 21 points, hitting 11-of-12 attempts from the free-throw line and became the 48th member of UConn's 1000 point scoring club. The Husky defense forced the Tigers into 18 turnovers limited the stellar Memphis offense to just nine attempts from the charity stripe.
The Huskies jumped up to No. 21 in the most recent AP Top-25 poll, earning 382 points and also came in at No. 21 in the USA Today poll with 158 points. UConn is one of four American Athletic Conference teams in the rankings, joining No. 7 Cincinnati, No. 11 Louisville, and No. 22 Memphis.
Connecticut will look to sweep the season series with the Owls after cruising to a 90-66 victory in Hartford on Jan. 21., led by DeAndre Daniels (Los Angeles, Calif.) who scored a career-high 31 points and pulled in 12 rebounds. Overall, UConn holds a 5-3 series all-time edge over Temple, but is 0-2 in Philadelphia in a series that dates back to 1950-51.
Temple enters the contest with a 7-17 record but is coming off a 71-64 victory over then-ranked No. 23 SMU on Sunday. Since losing to UConn last month, the Owls have gone 2-5 but senior guard Dalton Pepper has been one of the most consistent players in the league, averaging 18.2 points per game. Junior Will Cummings ranks second on the team with 16.2 points per game and also dishes out 4.4 assists per contest. The Owls have struggled in The American, losing by an average margin of 9.2 points and surrendering nearly 80 points (78.3) to conference opponents.
UConn head coach Kevin Ollie earned his 40th victory in 55 games at the helm of the Huskies and boasts the highest winning percentage (.727) among any Husky coach who has coached more than 20 games. Ollie is the first Connecticut coach to post back-to-back 20-win seasons in his first two years.