John F. Silver
Omar Calhoun scored 14 points and Shabazz Napier scored 13 as the Huskies’ defense held Washington to 29.7 percent shooting in a grinding 61-53 win before 12,720 at the XL Center on a snowy Saturday night in Hartford.
The Huskies win for the 10th time under Ollie and will head into Big East play on New Year’s Day against Marquette on a four game winning streak.
Ollie signed a 5-year extension prior to Saturday’s game that kicks in on Jan. 1.
The Huskies were winning with offense and precision the previous three games but went back to the old UConn formula of defense and a little rebounding.
The Huskies held Washington to less than 30 percent shooting and out-rebounded the bigger West Coast Huskies 40-36. It was only the second time this year that UConn has out-rebounded an opponent. Enosch Wolf supplied energy off the bench and led the Huskies with nine rebounds while Napier added eight rebounds.
Ryan Boatright added 12 points for UConn. The Huskies led by as many as 14 in the second half before Washington closed to within four late in the game, but couldn’t get over the hump. At 48-44 after a timeout, Napier hit a jumper in the lane to stop the run.
Scott Suggs scored 15 points to lead Washington (8-5). Washington leading scorer C.J. Wilcox was held to five points on 2 of 12 shooting, 14 points below his average.