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UConn and Monmouth Meet for First Time on Saturday

Huskies are unbeaten at home this season (PC: Steve Slade).
Dec. 1, 2017

Radio: UConn/IMG Radio Network / WTIC 1080 AM
Audio Stream:
Twitter: @UConnMBB
Tickets: UConn-Monmouth
Gameday: XL Center

STORRS, Conn. –
Coming off a 15-point comeback win against Columbia on Wednesday, the busy week continues for UConn men’s basketball on Saturday, as it welcomes Monmouth to the XL Center for a 4 p.m. tip – the first-ever meeting between the Huskies and Hawks.

SNY will provide coverage of the game, while the UConn IMG Radio Network will air its broadcast on WTIC 1080 AM. The Huskies (5-2) look to build momentum heading into Tuesday’s showdown with rival Syracuse at Madison Square Garden.

UConn is 4-0 at home this season and looks to extend the streak against Monmouth (3-4), one of just three home games in the month of December for head coach Kevin Ollie’s team. Three games remain before a final exams break (Dec. 10-20).

Sophomore guard Christian Vital sparked the UConn comeback on Wednesday, pouring in 29 points on 8-of-14 shooting – including a career-high seven three-pointers – to help the Huskies erase a double-digit deficit.

Four players scored in double-figures, including redshirt freshman forward Mamadou Diarra, who recorded his first-career double-double of 11 points and 10 rebounds. Redshirt junior Terry Larrier had a career-best 14 boards in the victory.

In home games this season, the Huskies are outscoring (+10.8 points) and outrebounding (+7.2) opponents – helping them to the unbeaten start at Gampel Pavilion and the XL Center. Vital leads the team with 17.0 points per game at home.


The Hawks, out of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, are coming off an outstanding 27-7 season in 2016-17 and a first-place finish in the MAAC. Monmouth lost a six-player senior class from that group and started out 3-4, but in its last two games, it bowed to Penn in four overtimes, and defeated previously undefeated Albany.

Junior guard Micah Seaborn is the top scorer (13.4), while freshman Deion Hammond (10.3) and senior Austin Tilghman (4.4 assists) are mainstays, along with top rebounder Mustapha Traore (5.1) and Diago Quinn (6.4 ppg, 4.7 rpg).


Junior guard Jalen Adams (17.5 points/game) and Larrier (16.0 points/game) are averaging a combined 33.5 points per game – nearly half of UConn’s scoring output on a nightly basis. Both players are shooting over 40-percent from the floor and averaging 30-plus minutes per game. Adams has a team-high 3.2 assists per contest, while Larrier is averaging a team-best 6.6 rebounds.


Saturday’s game continues a hectic stretch of the 2017-18 season for UConn, during which the Huskies will play seven games and make a 6,000-mile road trip in a 19-day span. After playing on Nov. 19 against Boston University in Hartford, the Huskies boarded a plane on Nov. 21 for the cross-country trip to Portland, Ore., where they competed in the PK80 Tournament on Nov. 23, 24 and 26.

UConn returned home on Nov. 27 and played host to Columbia on Nov. 29. The Huskies will entertain Monmouth, and then bus to New York City to meet Syracuse on Dec. 5 in the Jimmy V Classic at Madison Square Garden.