Thursday, November 14, 2013

A Detroit Breakdown, Motor City Shakedown for UConn

Some notes 'n quotes off UConn's 101-55 romp over Detroit on Thursday -- the most points the Huskies have scored in a game since a 103-47 clobbering of Tennessee-Chattanooga in a first-round NCAA tourney game in 2009.

*** Niels Giffey is now averaging 14.3 points-per-first-half this season and 0.0 points in the second halves.

“Let’s not talk about that,” he said, with a laugh. “I don’t know, to be honest. I know I can pick it up in the second half. I just didn’t force any shots. I’m just trying to be really picky with my shot selection, trying to take the right shots. At that point, the game was pretty much over with, so I tried to get other people involved. I guess I should have taken one or two shots.”

Actually, this time, Giffey's exact final line was predicted before the game.

“Shabazz told him, you’re gonna get 15 and you’re not gonna score again," Ryan Boatright said. "Everybody laughed … but he actually did. That was crazy.”

“He’s giving us another spark,” coach Kevin Ollie said of Giffey. “We’ve got to execute in the second half for him to get him some shots in the second half, but those first halves, he’s been coming in and giving us that spark. He’s been spacing the floor for us, too. Shabazz is finding him, Ryan’s finding him, our point guards are doing a great job finding the hot hand.”

*** Napier finished two assists and two boards shy of a triple-double, and probably could have notched it had he played the final 10 minutes. Boatright wasn't far off, either, with 12 points, seven assists and six boards. 

*** When UConn fell behind, 8-6, in the early minutes, it was the first time its trailed in a game this season.

*** Ollie was happy to see DeAndre Daniels, who went through his third straight scoreless half over the first 20 minutes, score 11 second-half points on 4-for-6 shooting.

“We didn’t do anything special, didn’t run any plays for him," Ollie said. "We ran one play for him, ‘Bazz found him on a slip, he hit a 3, and then his energy just started picking up. He ran the floor, got a dunk. When he was (going) good, he was hitting 3-4 baskets in transition, then getting 3-4 putbacks. Everything was flowing off that. He’s just been working. You can’t get down on yourself. Me and him had some great talks. He said, ‘Coach, I’m just gonna keep on working to get out of this.’”

*** Tyler Olander didn't enter the game until it was a blowout with 10:09 remaining, but managed to score 10 points.

*** Leon Tolksdorf, who had family in from Germany, made the most of his 10 minutes, as well, driving to the hole with authority a few times and scoring four points.

*** As of Thursday night, it appeared UConn had yet to receive national letters-of-intent from any of its three recruits: Daniel Hamilton, Sam Cassell, Jr. and Rakim Lubin. Cassell did send out a tweet, however, that he had signed his LOI. 

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