UConn to play Seton Hall

UConn coach Kevin Ollie and the Huskies take on Seton Hall in Newark on Sunday.

UConn coach Kevin Ollie and the Huskies take on Seton Hall in Newark on Sunday.

John F. Silver

The 3-pointer is one of the most dangerous shots in basketball.

When the 3 is going down, teams are unstoppable. Shooting 33 percent on a 3-pointer is the equivalent to 50 percent from 2-point range and when teams get hot, over 40 percent as the Huskies are apt to do, teams start to settle for the the 3-pointer.

That’s what’s happened to the Huskies recently. With no inside game with the continued struggles of Tyler Olander and Enosch Wolf, and zone defenses meant to keep the Huskies’ quick guards out of the lane, the offense has become 3-point happy.

UConn (15-6, 5-4 Big East) shot 27 3-pointers against USF in a win and 28 3-pointers against St. John’s in a loss.

It’s not a coincidence that the Huskies’ field goal percentages were 29 percent and 31 percent in those games.

UConn will face Seton Hall today in a Big East game at noon in Newark and UConn coach Kevin Ollie wants a more balanced an aggressive offense. 

The Huskies made it to Newark at about 1 a.m. on Sunday after a 5-hour trip from Storrs.

The Huskies’ first task is to get the offense fixed and that starts with Ryan Boatright, who is 4 of 19 and scored 22 points in the last two games. Boatright had only give points against St. John’s in a 71-65 loss on Wednesday.

” I think he needs to attack basket a little more,” Ollie said of Boatright. “We are playing against zone. It’s not just  him, it’s our whole team…we all have to attack the basket more. The Last two games we shot 55 threes. In a snow storm you get a chance to look at a lot of stuff. We are shooting too many 3s.”

The other part of Ollie’s frustrations with the offense is the finishing of shots. The Huskies are missing wide open jumpers and aren’t completing plays at the rim. On film, he counted 17 missed layups against St. John’s .
“We missed 17 layups, that’s unbelievable, you have to convert easy baskets,” Ollie said. “We have to be a little stronger.”
UConn gets a break on Sunday with Seton Hall leading scorer Fuqwan Edwin(16.9 ppg) likely out with an ankle sprain and the Pirates aren’t a dominant inside team, which will also help the inside-challenged Huskies.  Arron Crosby averages 11. 8 ppg. and  The Pirates are 13-10, 2-8 in the Big East and have lost four straight since a win over South Florida on Jan. 23.
“I know (Seton Hall) is 2-8 in the league,” Ollie said. “But they played Pittsburgh very tough. Real tough. It comes down to possessions. They’re 2-8 in the league, but we could easily be 2-8 in the league, or easily have a better record than we do. It comes down to the possessions. They’re a dangerous, dangerous team, and we don’t want them to start rolling on our watch.”

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