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Some post-game news, notes and quotes from UConn’s impressive 99-78 rout of DePaul at Gampel Pavilion:
-- Let’s start with sophomore forward DeAndre Daniels.
He played his best game this season, scoring a career-high 26 points. He was probably just as happy about his eight rebounds.
“Sometimes I tend not to be aggressive…,” Daniels said. “But I was aggressive tonight.”
Coach Kevin Ollie has been encouraging Daniels to hit the boards more. Daniels played only 17 minutes in last week’s overtime loss atMarquetteand finished with one rebound.
“He did a hell of a job today,” Ollie said. “I’m very proud of him.”
-- UConn had its best rebounding game of the season, holding a convincing 49-29 edge. The Huskies had a 30-11 edge at halftime.
Napier and Daniels led the way with eight apiece.
The 49 rebounds represented a season-high, topping the previous best of 43 againstNew Hampshire.
“We’ve been concentrating on hitting first, getting rebounds,” Ollie said. “And I thought we did that throughout the whole game.”
It was only the third time this season UConn has out-rebounded an opponent.
Napier, a 6-foot-1 guard, maintained his team lead in rebounding, raising his average to 4.5 per game.
-- Napier is having a heck of a season. He’s played his best basketball of his career in recent weeks. He had 16 points, eight rebounds, seven assists, four steals and zero turnovers in 35 minutes on Tuesday.
“Shabazz played a great floor game,” Ollie said.
-- Sophomore Ryan Boatright (22 points) continues to energize his teammates and torment opponents with his speed and attack mentality. He continually beat defenders to the basket and added an impressive one-hand dunk on the breakaway.
“He gave us that jolt that we needed,” Ollie said. “We fed off him.”
Boatright has scored in double figures in a team-best eight straight games.
-- Maybe junior Tyler Olander can gain some confidence from scoring a season-high 10 points. He added five rebounds.
-- The Huskies, who led 54-34 at the break, improved to 9-0 when leading at intermission. They scored a season-high for points. It was their most points in a Big East game since 2006.
-- UConn has won eight in a row in the series.
-- Daniels wore ice around his right shoulder after the game. Blame Boatright.
“My shoulder is all right,” Daniels said. “He dunked in practice and was swinging on the rim and kneed me right in the shoulder.”
-- The Huskies received a nice contribution from their bench. Junior Enosch Wolf had eight points and seven rebounds in 17 minutes. R.J. Evans ofSalemadded four points, four assists and two rebounds in 16 minutes.
-- DePaul guard Brandon Young scored a game-high 35 points. The Blue Demons played without starters Donnavan Kirk and Charles McKinney who sat out serving suspensions for violation of team rules.
-- UConn has a tough two-game stretch ahead, visiting Notre Dame Saturday and hostingLouisvilleon Monday. Both opponents are nationally ranked.
Today’s American Athletic Conference Championship semifinal doubleheader is underway here at the XL Center in Hartford. A crowd in the 12,000-13,000 range is expected for the UConn-Tulsa game. Tip-off time is 5 p.m.