Rutgers 64

(6-7, 0-3 Big East)

(12) Connecticut 78

(10-3, 2-1 Big East)

    2:00 PM ET, January 15, 2005

    XL Center, Hartford, Connecticut

    1 2 T
    RUTG 35 2964
    #12CONN 46 3278

    Top Performers

    Rutgers: M. Webb 16 Pts, 5 Reb, 2 Ast, 2 Stl

    Connecticut: J. Boone 20 Pts, 12 Reb, 2 Ast, 6 Blk

    Boone's 20 and 12 sink Scarlet Knights

    HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) -- Connecticut's three big men came up very big on Saturday.

    The Huskies' front line of Josh Boone, Charlie Villanueva and Rudy Gay combined for 48 points and 34 rebounds and the Huskies (No. 11 ESPN/USA Today; No. 12 AP) beat Rutgers 78-64 by outscoring the Scarlet Knights 58-28 in the paint.

    The 6-foot-10 Boone had 20 points, 12 rebounds and six blocked shots to lead the Huskies (10-3, 2-1 Big East). The 6-11 Villanueva added 14 points, tied his career-high with 14 rebounds, blocked six shots and had four assists, including two of the spectacular, no-look, behind-the-head variety.

    "I did walk by him and say, 'Hey Magic, how are you doing?" UConn coach Jim Calhoun said.

    Gay, a 6-9 freshman, added 14 points and eight rebounds.

    "Nobody can really stop us," Gay said. "We have one of the best frontcourts in the nation, why not use it?"

    Connecticut jumped on Rutgers early, scoring the first eight points of the game and never trailed. The Huskies built a 14-4 lead early as Rutgers missed its first nine shots.

    "I thought we started on a negative, and that's what hurt us," Rutgers coach Gary Waters said. "We had three layups, we're fighting and they (UConn) are questioning themselves. But instead, we missed the layups and it became tighter and tighter for our guys to score in the paint."

    Marquis Webb had 16 points and Quincy Douby added 13 for the Scarlet Knights (6-7, 0-3), who lost their fourth in a row.

    Rutgers was just 5-of-19 from 3-point range and couldn't compete with Connecticut underneath. The Huskies outrebounded Rutgers 53-46 and scored 27 second-chance points.

    "There's going to be games like that," Boone said. "There's going to be games when we really dominate inside, then there are going to be games when the guards have to do the majority of the work."

    After trailing 46-35 at halftime, Rutgers used a 7-2 run to close within 48-42, but would get no closer. Connecticut responded with a 14-4 run.

    After a five-point Rutgers spurt made it 70-60 with 5 minutes left, UConn responded with two possessions that shut the door.

    UConn had three missed shots and three offensive rebounds before Gay hit a jumper from the right wing. Point guard Marcus Williams then stole the ball on the defensive end and fed Villanueva, who gave the ball back to Williams on a touch pass for a layup.

    "I'd rather make an assist than score to be honest with you," Villanueva said. "I love passing the ball."

    Connecticut, which had been held below 40 percent shooting in losing two of its previous three games, shot 45 percent from the field, and held Rutgers to 35 percent shooting.

    Connecticut has won 11 of its 12 games against Rutgers since the Scarlet Knights joined the Big East in 1995.

    The win came a day after UConn announced that Calhoun had accepted a 6-year contract extension worth $9.1 million. Calhoun is in his 19th year with the Huskies. He led UConn to its second national title last year and ranks eighth in career wins among all active NCAA coaches with 689 victories, 441 coming at Connecticut.

    "The official said something to me about, 'We were hoping for six months, not six years," Calhoun joked.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 64 78
    FG Made-Attempted 26-74 (.351) 35-78 (.449)
    3P Made-Attempted 5-19 (.263) 3-14 (.214)
    FT Made-Attempted 7-10 (.700) 5-12 (.417)
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 13 (0/0) 10 (0/0)
    Largest Lead 0 19

    2004-05 Season

    » Jan 15, 2005 @CONN 78, RUTG 64Recap
    Feb 19, 2005 CONN 85, @RUTG 63Recap