Connecticut Outlasts West Virginia While Cincinnati Hands Georgetown First Home Loss

A pair of hard-fought Big East tilts gave hoops junkies a solid alternative to touchdown-light football on Monday evening.

There were zero college basketball games on Monday where less than two teams scored.

I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'.

TOP 25 SCORES:

Cincinnati 68, No. 11 Georgetown 64
No. 17 Connecticut 64, West Virginia 57

GAME OF THE NIGHT: Connecticut 64, West Virginia 57

This is your classic case of a misleading final score as Connecticut trailed for nearly the duration of the contest and didn't have more than a three-point lead until the game's final 16 seconds.

The Huskies actually trailed by as much as ten in the second half before Jeremy Lamb and Andre Drummond put on their star faces. The duo combined for 45 points and 19 rebounds and sparked a key 17-3 run that put UConn in position to snap its ugly two game losing streak and improve to 9-0 all-time against West Virginia in games played in the state of Connecticut.

WVU had a chance to tie things up near the end of the game, but Kevin Jones' three-pointer was off-the-mark. Still, it appeared that the rebound clearly went off of Connecticut's Alex Oriakhi, but even after a conference the officials gave the ball back to the Huskies with 17 seconds remaining.

Kemba Walker is gone (Did you know that? Have you heard that?), but youthful UConn still has more than enough talent to again challenge for the national title. Shabazz Napier saw significant time at the point last year and is emerging as a team leader and reliable floor general; Jeremy Lamb was a star last March and the team's No. 2 option, and he's even better this year; Andre Drummond has the potential to make a run at several national freshman of the year honors; and the team's starting big man from a year ago - Alex Oriakhi - is also still around.

If you're reeling off the names of teams with the pieces to cut down the nets in April, there's no way you can exclude Connecticut at this point.

UPSET OF THE NIGHT: Cincinnati 68, Georgetown 64

Cincinnati bounced back from an ugly loss to St. John's over the weekend to deal the 11th-ranked Hoyas their first home loss of the season.

Sean Kilpatrick scored a career-high 27 points and had four steals for a UC squad that went 6 for 6 from the free-throw line in the game's final 70 seconds. Dion Dixon added 22 points and had two of his four steals in those closing minutes for the Bearcats, who forced Georgetown into 17 turnovers, matching the Hoyas' season-high.

Hollis Thompson and Jason Clark scored 14 points apiece and combined to go 11 for 13 from the field for Georgetown, whose 59 percent shooting was counteracted by their carelessness with the ball.

The win was Cincinnati's third straight over the Hoyas.

PLAYER OF THE NIGHT: Matthew Dellavedova, Saint Mary's

The Gaels' sharp-shooter buried six treys and scored a career-high 27 points as Saint Mary's topped San Francisco, 87-72. He also handed out four assists and grabbed six rebounds.

HONOR ROLL:

Sean Kilpatrick, Cincinnati - Scored a career-high 27 points and had four steals in Cincy's big win over Georgetown.

Stephen Holt, Saint Mary's - Dellavedova's teammate came one rebound short of a triple-double, as he scored 11 points and dished out ten assists.

Andre Drummond, Connecticut - Scored 20 points on 9-of-11 shooting to go with 11 rebounds.

Jeremy Lamb, Connecticut - Took over when the Huskies needed him to and finished the game with 25 points and eight rebounds.

Quincy Roberts, Grambling State - Scored a game-high 26 points to lead the Tigers to a 72-71 win over Alcorn State in SWAC play.

QUOTE OF THE NIGHT: "I always thought it was kind of neat that he did it on Bedlam. I kind of thought about it in years past. It was kind of his thing. We kept it under wraps. I wanted to just honor him by it." --Oklahoma State head coach Travis Ford

Five minutes before the Cowboys' game against Oklahoma, Ford donned a bright orange suit jacket just like the one women's coach Kurt Budke used to wear when his Cowgirls faced rival Oklahoma. It was the first basketball installment of the rivalry since Budke and assistant coach Miranda Serna were among four people killed in a Nov. 17 plane crash. The Cowboys won, 72-65.

IMAGE OF THE NIGHT:

69095_oklahoma_oklahoma_st_basketball_medium

I would never tell you about something like that without actually showing you it. That's just not the kind of person I am. To be honest, I'm a little offended you would even think otherwise.

FIVE TO END:

1. Playing its first game without suspended head coach Todd Bozeman, Morgan State lost to Savannah State, 57-55. Bozeman is serving an indefinite suspension while the university investigates some physical contact that took place between he and senior guard Larry Batsfield near the end of the Bears' win over South Carolina State last Saturday.

2. A pair of high-profile transfers announced their destinations on Monday, as Khem Birch (Pittsburgh) decided on UNLV and Jamal Branch (Texas A&M) opted for St. John's.

3. Norfolk State moved to 4-0 in the MEAC - its best start since the 2004-05 season - with a 68-48 win over Howard.

4. Wyoming beat Idaho State for the second time this season to improve to 14-2. It's the Cowboys' best 16-game start since the 1950-51 team began the season 15-1.

5. Oklahoma State has taken four of the last five from Oklahoma, but the Sooners stil lead the all-time series, 128-93.

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