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Uconn Wins Big East Brawl With Pitt
Posted By Wilson Tarpeh Jr. On Mar 10 2011 @ 2:46 pm In UConn | No Comments
All I have to say about this game is Kemba, Kemba, Kemba, and KEMBA!! Kemba Walker came through in the clutch for the Huskies by hitting the game winner over against Pitt as Uconn won 76-74. Pitt was the number 1 seed in the Big East Tournament and Uconn was the ninth seed, but let me set up the series of events that let to Kemba hitting the game winning shot. On Uconn’s previous possession, they cleared out to let Kemba go to work and he got into the lane to put up a soft shot. His shot may have been too soft because he missed, but Jamal Coombs-McDaniels grabbed what was probably the biggest rebound in this game in a crowd of Pitt players and called timeout. Then Uconn inbounded the ball to Alex Oriahki, how got it back to Kemba and he took it out to the top of the key. The problem with this for Pitt was by the time their defense has switched as Kemba made his journey from the corner to the top of the key, he was matched up with Pitt Center Gary McGhee….Kemba hit McGee with a crossover and then with a step-back, when Kemba finished the cross and the stepback it sent McGhee to the floor and Kemba rose up and DRILLED the mid-range J!! Uconn did a great job not backing down to the physical Pitt team, Pitt is a team that will make a deep run in the NCAA tournament because or ther execution, they never look rushed and always get an open shot. Their offense is truly a thing of beauty to watch, Ashton Gibbs went off on the Huskies today with 27 points on 10 of 13 shooting and drilling 6 of his 7 three point attempts. His back-court mate Brad Wannamaker created a lot of problems for the Huskies as well, Wannamaker finished the game with 17 points and 4 rebounds. What got Uconn this win was their mental toughness, these 2 teams played back in December and Uconn got whipped by the physical Pitt team. Today those same “kids” from Uconn showed how much they’ve changed as they battled Pitt all game long for every loose ball and rebound. Alex Oriahki didn’t have a big first half, but he made up for it in the 2nd half by being assertive and causing all types of trouble for the Pitt bigs on the boards. Pitt’s bigs were in foul trouble for most of the 2nd half. Oriahki finished the game with 13 points and 7 rebounds, much of it coming in the 2nd half. Jamal Coombs-McDaniels had 5 points and 2 rebounds, with one of those boards being the BIGGEST of the game. Freshman Shabazz Napier and Jeremy Lamb really showed their growth today, they played good defense and hit big shots to HELP keep Pitt’s defense honest. Napier had 10 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, and a block in 30 minutes off the bench. Lamb had 17 points and 4 rebounds in 35 minutes of play, Roscoe Smith left the game in the first half after getting elbowed. He is expected to miss the rest of the Big East Tourney so he can be ready for the Big Dance. Last but not least, Kemba Walker…Kemba’s final stat line was 24 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 steals. Uconn faces the winner of the St. Johns-Syracuse game tomorrow, here’s a clip from press row(I wasn’t there, just from youtube).
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