NCAAB Game Recap - N.J.I.T. at Connecticut
Sun Dec 29, 2019 1:00 PM EST

WVU
67
OhSt
59
F
Kansas
72
Stan
56
F
AlSt
59
Oreg
98
F
Lipsco
59
Aub
86
F
UMassL
60
Mich
86
F
Bry
70
MD
84
F
W MI
62
MSU
95
F
Navy
56
UVA
65
F
Corn
59
PSU
90
F
CSBak
58
TxTch
73
F
KennSt
51
Iowa
93
F
Norf
65
Stony
81
F
AlaAM
56
ND
82
F
NJIT
47
UConn
69
F
(N/A)
55
CenCT
89
F
Lib
57
LSU
74
F
CmbTN
42
Chat
72
F
Iona
54
Colora
99
F
(N/A)
48
ETSU
117
F
KTChr
56
Presb
81
F
TXAMC
52
Nebras
73
F
NCAT
64
Ill
95
F
(N/A)
45
Bingha
98
F
VMI
82
USC-Up
91
F
Lafy
67
SacHr
66
F
HolyC
62
Sien
74
F
Campbl
63
Ohio
55
F
SeLA
31
OkSt
82
F
(N/A)
72
TN-M
92
F
(N/A)
48
SIU-E
96
F
AbCh
66
WichSt
84
F
SamH
75
Rice
61
F
Duques
61
Marsh
83
F
(N/A)
45
Radf
90
F
UCDav
69
NM
74
F
Hartfo
67
NW
66
F
TNTec
63
Miss
80
F
Leh
62
Princ
71
F
App
60
NCSU
72
F
URI
89
MidTN
62
F
Alc
57
SCla
92
F
(N/A)
67
USD
93
F
ChBap
61
NWSt
101
F
LoyMD
51
VACom
85
F
FlAtl
58
SoFL
60
F
(N/A)
59
SEMO
74
F
NDSt
66
Denv
55
F
SDSt
78
NebOm
81
F
SDak
75
W IL
82
F
N DA
66
OrSt
83
F
Harv
71
Cal
63
F
NNMU
30
NMSt
104
F
UCSB
85
ULLa
77
F
Tuls
67
KansSt
69
F
Boston
69
(N/A)
67
F
MD-ES
37
VaTec
92
F
Ark
71
Ind
64
F
Rich
78
Alab
90
F
BethC
67
StLou
77
F
ArkPB
50
WaSt
65
F
Maine
51
HI
91
F
FlGlf
58
USC
71
F

Dec 29, 2019, 1:00 PM EST

Final

1

2

T

N.J.I.T. (3-10)

20

27

47

Connecticut (9-3)

35

34

69

Vital scores 23, leads UConn to 69-47 rout of NJIT
Sun Dec 29, 2019 4:49 PM

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) UConn coach Dan Hurley let out a big exhale after the Huskies final game of 2019.

Christian Vital scored 23 points and Connecticut ended the mid-major portion of its 2019-20 schedule on Sunday with a 69-47 rout of NJIT.

“You feel relief getting through this last ‘buy’ game here, because there's not a whole lot to gain from winning it, and there is a lot to lose from blowing it,” Hurley said. “Now we've got a chance to play for something. Now we've got a chance to play in high-level conference games and we've got a chance to try and move this thing forward.”

Vital hit eight of his 15 shots and was 5 of 8 from 3-point range. He also had five rebounds and four assists.

Brendan Adams added 12 points for the Huskies (9-3), who have won six of their last seven heading into the New Year and American Athletic Conference play. Akok Akok chipped in with seven points, 10 rebounds and five blocked shots.

UConn never trailed against the Highlanders. Akok scored five of the Huskies first nine points and UConn jumped out to a 12-4 lead. Three straight 3-pointers, two of them from Vital, sparked a 13-0 run that gave the Huskies early control of the game at 25-10.

UConn had seven 3-pointers in the half and led 35-20 at the break. They extended that by going on an 14-3 run to open the second half.

Souleymane Diakite had a double-double for NJIT, scoring 12 points and pulling down 11 rebounds. The 6-foot-9 sophomore also blocked six shots.

“I was really proud of the way he competed and played almost the entire game too. Not a lot of breaks,” coach Brian Kennedy said. “Souleymane's a talented player.”

Zach Cooks, who came in averaging just over 23 points per game, also scored 12 points for the Highlanders, who fall to 3-10.

The Huskies outrebounded NJIT 43-32 which helped them get into their transition game. They outscored the Highlanders 19-3 on the fast break.

BIG PICTURE

NJIT: Cooks has now led NJIT or tied for the lead in scoring in 12 of 13 games this season. But he wasn't a big factor in this one, scoring just four points in the first half. He hit just four of his 12 shots from the floor.

UConn: The Huskies shot 40% from the field, but were much better from 3-point range, hitting 11 of their 25 shots from behind the arc (44%)

DEFENSE

UConn held NJIT to 33% shooting, blocked 11 shots and scored 19 points off 15 Highlander turnovers.

“This team is really good defensively," Vital said. “We have a lot of guys who understand where to be. This team is a unit, I think we play like that.”

RESOLUTIONS

Hurley joked that his resolutions for the New Year include drinking less coffee, going to bed earlier, and cursing less. But in all seriousness, he believes the Huskies are resolved to have a better 2020 than 2019.

“We're a better team than we were last year,” he said. “Obviously we've got some exciting young players and we're potentially very good defensively. Offensively, we've still got some real work to do.”

Alterique Gilbert says the team really has just two resolutions.

“Win and make the tournament," he said.

UP NEXT

NJIT: The Highlanders are off until Jan. 4 when they host Liberty.

UConn: The Huskies open conference play in their last year as a member of the American Athletic Conference with a trip to Cincinnati on New Year's Day. It will be UConn's first true road game this season.

---

More AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/Collegebasketball and https://twitter.com/AP-Top25

Leaders

N.J.I.T. PTS +/- AST REB ST BLK
C. Matthews 0 0 0 1 0 0
Z. Cooks 12 0 4 2 0 0
Connecticut PTS +/- AST REB ST BLK
M. Garry 0 0 0 0 0 0
T. Aiyegbusi 0 0 0 0 0 0

Team Comparison

NJIT UConn
Points For 47 69
Field Goals 17/52-33% 25/63-40%
Three Pointers 3/12-25% 11/25-44%
Free Throws 10/13-77% 8/16-50%
Offensive Rebounds 9 17
Defensive Rebounds 23 26
Rebounds 38 46
Blocks 6 11
Steals 3 6
Turnovers 15 10
Personal Fouls 12 16
Technical Fouls 0 1
Ejections 0 0

2019-2020 Regular Season - UConn Leads Series 1-0

Date Result Away Pts Ldr Home Pts Ldr
Sun Dec 29 NJIT 47 @ UConn 69 B. Breland III 2 J. Gaffney 1

Game Information

Stadium: XL Center, Hartford, Connecticut
Attendance: 10,507
Game Time: