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- College basketball player (2020–202_) Connecticut
The UConn men’s basketball team and close games are still a work in progress.
After a 17-day hiatus in play due to COVID-19 issues within the program, the Huskies lost an overtime heartbreaker to No. 24 Seton Hall 90-87 Saturday at the Prudential Center.
UConn had a chance to force a second overtime when Adama Sanogo caught a length-of-the-floor pass and missed on a jumper with time running out.
In regulation, R.J. Cole had tied the game for UConn at 77-77 with two free throws and 1:48 remaining. From that point neither team could score and, after Seton Hall’s Bryce Aiken missed a three-pointer with two seconds left, headed to overtime.
Seton Hall guard Kadary Richmond had a season-high 27 points and Jared Rhoden added 15, including the 1,000th of his career.
Sanogo led UConn (10-4, 1-2) with 18 points on 8-for-16 shooting from the field and added a game-high 16 rebounds. Cole chipped in 15 points on 4-for-13 shooting from the field but was missed for the latter part of the OT when he fouled out with 2:19 remaining.
Sanogo started his first game since UConn’s 72-63 victory over Maryland Eastern Shore on Nov. 30 and played 32 minutes. He had four games with an abdominal strain before seeing 13 minutes in a 78-70 win against Marquette. He came into this game questionable to play with a hamstring injury.
By the 13-minute mark, Sanogo already had eight points on 4-for-4 shooting. He got to his spots in the post, took smart shots, and perhaps most importantly, passed out of tough shots.
Both teams came out the gate shooting well with Seton Hall (11-4, 2-2) leading 13-11 at the 14:45 mark when a media timeout was taken. UConn took off on a 25-15 run and had a 36-28 lead with 4:35 left in the half.
On the defensive end, the usually dependable Huskies’ defense struggled. Seton Hall shot 15-for-29 (51.7%), including 4-for-8 from 3. UConn’s biggest issue was letting the Pirates get pivotal rebounds that led to second-half points. The Huskies did force eight Seton Hall turnovers and led 41-37 at the break.
In the second half, the Pirates regained the lead after Bryce Aiken (22 points) made a 3 to put them up 42-41.
Putting away Seton Hall was no easy task for UConn. Richmond scored 17 straight points for Seton Hall including an astonishing 6-for-6 from the field. With 11:48 left in the half, Richmond hit a huge 3 to put Seton Hall up 62-61. In the first half, Richmond had just two points. UConn’s defense struggled in the second half, allowing Seton Hall to make 9 of their last 10 field goals at one point.