Hasheem Thabeet had 15 points, seven rebounds and six blocked shots and Connecticut beat No. 13 Marquette, 89-73, today at Storrs, Conn., snapping the Huskies' seven-game losing streak against ranked teams.
The Huskies (12-5, 3-3 Big East) lived up to their defensive statistics and had one of their best offensive showings of the season.
It was the second straight big loss for Marquette (13-4, 3-3), which lost 71-51 to Louisville on Thursday. The Golden Eagles had their third poor shooting game in their last four, finishing at 40 percent (26-for-65), a number which they improved significantly with a scoring flurry over the game's final minutes.
Connecticut came into the game sixth in the nation in field goal percentage defense (36.8) and led the country in blocked shots (9.2). The Huskies finished with 10 blocks Sunday with the 7-foot-3 Thabeet, who was 3-for-3 from the field and 9-for-13 from the free throw line, leading the way.
Marquette shot a season-worst 30.4 percent in the loss to Louisville which included missing all 12 of its 3-point attempts. On Sunday, the Golden Eagles were 10-for-21 from beyond the arc.
Connecticut's last win over a ranked team was over then-No. 17 Washington in the regional semifinals of the 2006 NCAA tournament, the game before the Huskies lost to George Mason for the right to advance to the Final Four.
A.J. Price had 17 points and eight assists for the Huskies, who had lost two straight and three of four, while Jeff Adrien and Craig Austrie both had 15 points.
Lazar Hayward had 14 points for the Golden Eagles, who had won two of three, and Wesley Matthews added 13.
The Huskies were 33-for-39 from the free throw line while the Golden Eagles were 11-for-18.
Connecticut took a 12-4 lead as Marquette missed 10 of its first 11 shots from the field. The Huskies stretched the lead to 39-24 at halftime by holding the Golden Eagles to 27.6 percent (8-for-29), while hitting 51.7 percent (15-for-29).
No. 9 Indiana 81, Penn St. 65
Eric Gordon scored 25 points and D.J. White added 22, including nine during a 14-4 second-half run that carried the Hoosiers to the win at Bloomington, Ind.
The Hoosiers (16-1, 5-0 Big Ten) won their 27th straight home game and stretched their winning streak this season to 12 games, their longest in 15 years.
Penn State (10-7, 2-3), which lost leading scorer and rebounder Geary Claxton with a season-ending knee injury against Wisconsin on Tuesday, came out strong, stayed with the Hoosiers most of the game and led 52-51 before a 3-pointer by Gordon started Indiana's big run.
White had Indiana's next five points and assisted on another basket by Jamarcus Ellis, and the Hoosiers began pulling away for good.
Two free throws by Talor Battle were the only points by the Nittany Lions in the next 4 minutes, and two free throws by Gordon, a 3-pointer by Armon Bassett and a layup by Gordon pushed Indiana's lead to 72-58.
Penn State, which has never won in 15 games at Assembly Hall, never came closer than 12 points the rest of the way, and Indiana took its biggest lead at 81-60 in the closing seconds.
Bassett added 17 points and Ellis finished with 12 for the Hoosiers. Battle, a freshman, had a career-high 20 points and Jamelle Cornley added 19 for Penn State. Freshman Jeff Brooks, who started in place of Claxton, had six points.
No. 11 Michigan State 78, Minnesota 73
Drew Neitzel emerged from a deep shooting slump and made five 3-pointers in the final 20 minutes to lead Michigan State to the win at Minneapolis.
Neitzel finished with 19 points and reserve Kalin Lucas added 12 points for the Spartans (16-2, 4-1), who shook off 18 turnovers to win their second in a row following a woeful 36-point effort at Iowa last week.
Lawrence McKenzie had 20 points for the Gophers (12-5, 2-3), who are still looking for their first quality win under new coach Tubby Smith.