There's a reason why people hate when Hollywood makes sequels. We've already seen the movie once, we don't want to sit through it again. Well, UConn fans were forced into watching the same movie twice in one week.
Just like against Texas, UConn was up two in the waning moments of the game. Ryan Boatright stepped to the line with a chance to give the Huskies a three point lead, but again, he missed a big foul shot.
Yale, who surely must have scouted UConn's inability to switch and defend out of bounds plays, exploited the left corner three. Jack Montague caught the inbound pass, squared up and drilled the shot to give the Bulldogs the 45-44 edge.
"The play was for (Justin) Seares, a lob. But they took that away, Coach told me to look for a shot. I got it and let it fly," Montague said.
Following the game, UConn coach Kevin Ollie expressed his dissatisfaction with his team.
"It was just miscommunication. Ryan (Boatright) called for a switch with Sam (Cassell Jr.). Sam was late to recover and Montague got the shot off. It was a great shot, but poor communication from us," he said. "Going forward, we can go two ways. We can stick together and fight or we can point the finger, fight and separate."
Tonight marks UConn's third loss in a row. Ollie was not thrilled with his team's performance.
"We're at the bottom right now. We have to find the toughness in our locker room. We need our guys to be tougher. That's not just going out and hitting somebody, but being mentally tough...We got out rebounded by 11, only got 1 offensive rebound. I don't think I've ever seen that before, as a player, a coach, for a team to get 1 offensive rebound," he said.
The Huskies opened the game with a disturbing lack of energy and effort. Yale opened the game on a 22-9 run and would go into the half with a 24-19 lead. The Bulldogs got strong production out of their center, Justin Seares. Seares was a man possessed, finishing with 12 points and 15 rebounds, 8 of them offensive. Simply, Seares outworked UConn's front court by a significant margin.
Entering the game, it was unclear what kind of production the Huskies would get from their injured guards, Ryan Boatright and Rodney Purvis. The answer: not much. Purvis struggled in the early parts of the game, looking sluggish and unhealthy. He would only play 8 minutes. Boatright, meanwhile, was not himself. His ankle was clearly nagging him. He submitted his worst performance of the season. He was held scoreless until the 9:28 mark of the 2nd half. He would finish with 6 points, 6 assists and 4 rebounds, but it was his 4 turnovers and 1 missed free throw that loom large on the stat sheet.
Amida Brimah was one Husky who really brought it tonight. Yale did not have an athlete on the floor that could body him and he exploited his height advantage to catch 4 alley oops tonight. He finished with 14 points. Brimah should have been featured more and should have demanded the ball in the paint, as he had mismatches all night long.
Throughout the game, UConn looked disjointed. They did not fight and were pushed around by Yale.
"We had bad communication. We weren't aggressive enough. Our chemistry is not where it was last year. We gotta get in the gym and work," Brimah said.
These are bleak times for the defending National Champions. Dropping three games in a row, letting back to back teams win on buzzer beaters on the SAME EXACT PLAY, losing to an in-state rival. This is bad. With Duke and Florida looming in the next few weeks, the Huskies need to right the ship, fast. It may be premature, but it's conceivable for this team to miss the tournament. With the way they're playing, it's about what they deserve.