STORRS, Conn. – The UConn men’s basketball team (11-9, 4-4 American) is set to host conference newcomer East Carolina (9-12, 2-6 American) at Gampel Pavilion on Wednesday night at 7 p.m. The game can be seen on ESPNU, and it will be broadcasted live by the UConn IMG Radio Network. The Huskies, who are 7-3 in home games, enter Wednesday’s game with a mark of 2-2 in games played at Gampel this season.
Connecticut guard Ryan Boatright (Aurora, Ill.) tallied a career-high 31 points in a losing effort on Sunday for UConn, which fell to Houston, 70-68, on the road. The senior captain scored 26 of the Huskies’ final 28 points, and he matched a career-high with five 3-pointers. Sophomore center Amida Brimah (Accra, Ghana) joined Boatright in double-figures with 11 points, while freshman guard Daniel Hamilton (Los Angeles, Calf.) grabbed a career-high 14 rebounds in the loss.
UConn finished the contest with a 51-35 rebound advantage, but the Husky defense only caused one Houston turnover. Both teams shot under 40 percent, while the Cougars connected on eight 3-pointers compared to just six for the Huskies. With the loss, the Huskies dropped to 1-4 this season in games decided by four points or less.
Wednesday’s contest will be the first meeting between UConn and East Carolina since 1978. The Huskies are 3-1 all-time against the Pirates, with their only loss coming in the 1971 season. ECU snapped a three-game losing streak on Sunday with a 50-46 win over Cincinnati over the weekend, as the Pirates rallied from a nine-point second half deficit behind a game-high 18 points from guard B.J. Tyson. The freshman ranks second on the team in scoring (12.1 points/game), rebounds (4.3) and steals (18) and his 32 assists are good for the third-best mark on ECU.
Sunday’s win was just the second conference victory for the Pirates, who average 56.1 points a game in league play this season. Overall, East Carolina averages 65.2 points a game, and the Pirates have shot 42.1 percent from the floor and 33.7 percent from the 3-point line. Guards Terry Whisnant (13.6) and Caleb White (11.9) are the other ECU players to average double-figures this year, while forward Michel-Ofik Nzege leads the team in rebounds (5.6) to go along with 6.6 points per contest. The Pirates are winless on the road this year, losing their seven road contests by an average of 18.4 points.
After Wednesday, Connecticut will resume its conference schedule on the road against Tulane on Saturday. The game tips off at 6 p.m., and it can be seen on CBS Sports Network.
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