The Connecticut Huskies started the second half brilliantly against the Syracuse Orange after an even first half, but poor shooting late was their ultimate undoing. At one point, UConn had an eight-point lead with just over 12 points remaining, but Syracuse went on a run to take the lead with just over five minutes remaining. UConn couldn't generate offense late, as Syracuse moved on with a 58-55 win.
Syracuse turned the game around with an 8-0 run in the second half, during which James Southerland hit two three-point shots. Their run was almost undone by a hilariously ill-advised 20-foot jumper by Fab Melo, a mistake which earned him an earful from Jim Boeheim and Dion Waiters. Connecticut had plenty of opportunities to come back, but some bad shots by Shabazz Napier -- who was 5-for-17 from the floor -- and a couple of open misses by others.
Incredibly, despite all of their missed opportunities late, UConn were gifted an excellent chance to get back into the game at the end. While down eight points, Napier made a three-pointer while being fouled. He missed the free throw, but Andre Drummond made the put-back for a five-point possession. Southerland made both free throws at the other end, which was followed up by another Drummond bucket. UConn couldn't get a steal on the ensuing inbound pass, as Dion Waiters took it down the floor to run out the clock.
For more on the two teams, check out Connecticut Huskies blog The UConn Blog and Syracuse Orange blog Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician. For more on the Big East tournament, visit Big East Coast Bias and SB Nation New York.