UConn swam back up into the win column on Tuesday night.
The Huskies defeated rival Providence 73-61, forcing a season split between the two Big East squads. The win props Connecticut up to 10-5 on the season and 7-5 in Big East play, this after two consecutive wins over Providence and Xavier over the weekend.
UConn fell down 4-0 early on, but then got things rolling. They went on an 11-0 run fueled by Adama Sanogo, Tyrese Martin and R.J. Cole. James Bouknight, returning to action after injury, came in and took flight with a ferocious dunk that would’ve popped a Gampel Pavilion crowd under normal circumstances. The Huskies would be challenged by the Friars for a bit, especially so after Noah Horchler tied the game with a 3-pointer.
A.J. Reeves would later tie the game on a 3-ball, but from that point on, the Huskies put the clamps on. Providence wouldn’t ever tie the game after that, as UConn only surmounted more of a lead. That margin extended itself to as wide as 18 points several times in the second half, and would of course go down to 12 points as the MOV.
James Bouknight and Tyrese Martin both starred in the Huskies’ victory. Bouknight and Martin each scored 18 points on the night, shooting a combined 15-for-29 from the field. Bouk scored his 18 points in just 24 minutes of action. He lit up the field and provided a much-needed source of energy and production for his team.
Martin, meanwhile, was terrific. He shot 50 percent from the floor on 16 attempts and also went 2-for-3 from 3-point land. Martin also added seven boards and committed only one turnover in 36 minutes on the floor.
R.J. Cole made it into double figures as well, finishing the game with 13 points. Tyler Polley was just shy, ending the game with nine points while Josh Carlton was three shy with seven.
Alyn Breed and David Duke led the Friars in points with 14 and 11. Horchler and Reeves each scored nine, and Greg Gantt and Nate Watson finished with six. The Friars were plagued significantly by their shooting or lack thereof. They made just 21 field goals on the night, four of them 3-pointers. They went 15-of-20 from the free throw line, but poor shooting elsewhere doomed them.