Halftime: UConn 31 - Cincinnati 26
So far so good for the Huskies, who have done a nice job beating Cincinnati's usually smothering defense while largely keeping the Bearcats off the scoresheet. While Cincinnati owns a 13-10 rebounding advantage, UConn has shot 46 percent from the floor compared to Cincinnati's 40 percent. The Huskies also opened up leads of 9 and 10 points at various points in the half, though Cincinnati responded both times and finished the half on a 5-0 run.
Sean Kilpatrick is the game's leading scorer so far with 9 points, followed close behind by Niels Giffey and Justin Jackson with 8 points and Shabazz Napier with 7. Even Terrence Samuel got some playing time mid-way through the half, as did Kentan Facey, who is presumably seeing more action due to the continued absence of DeAndre Daniels.
Overall there isn't really much else to say, UConn is playing well on the road against a Top 10 opponent, and if the team can keep up their first half production, the Huskies should come home from Cincinnati with a really solid win in their back pockets.
Second half should be starting up shortly.
In the brave new world that is the American Athletic Conference, it's sometimes difficult to keep up with all the new names and faces, but tonight UConn takes the court against a very familiar foe in a matchup with major conference ramifications.
Despite all the hype surrounding Louisville and Memphis, it is the Cincinnati Bearcats who currently stand atop the American landscape. Cincinnati is currently ranked No. 7 in the country with a 21-2 record and a perfect 10-0 mark in the AAC, and if the No. 22 ranked Huskies want to claim the inaugural American conference regular season championship, they will have to knock the Bearcats from their perch.
Of course, at 17-4 and a 5-3 record in the AAC, it will take more than one win and more than one Cincinnati loss to get back into the conference championship picture. Louisville is one ahead of UConn in the loss column and both Memphis and SMU have more conference wins, but like coach Kevin Ollie said, we take the stairs, and the Huskies have a chance to take a big step towards their goal tonight.
Plus, I think it goes without saying that beating a Top 10 team on the road is a great thing to have on your resume, so a win tonight would be massive for UConn's tournament chances and would likely help bump the Huskies up a seed or two in the projections.
Tipoff is at 7 p.m. on ESPN. Go Huskies!!!