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UConn Grinds Out 'Nova, Advances to Sweet 16

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The Huskies earn their 17th Sweet 16 and get to do it in MSG, see you there

I'm gonna keep this short and sweet because it's getting very dusty in here.

Shabazz Napier, despite missing the last 12 minutes of the first half and missing a chunk of time in the second, scored 25 points on 9-13 from the field. He added 5 rebounds and 3 assists, but more importantly, early in the second half he hit some Sam Cassell Senior threes which gave UConn the cushion they needed to hold onto the lead and outlast the Villanova Wildcats.

Four other players scored double figures for the Huskies in a beautiful team effort. Foremost of those four was freshman Terrance Samuel, who gets my vote for MVP of the night.

With a little over 12 minutes left in the game, Shabazz Napier picked up his second foul. Samuel, who had been averaging 7 minutes per game, played the rest of the first half and gave UConn more quality minutes in the second stanza on his way to an 11-point performance where he went 7-of-8 from the free throw line. Napier's early exit could have been the end of the road for the Huskies, but Samuel and Boatright made sure that didn't happen.

Lasan Kromah, DeAndre Daniels, and Ryan Boatright each hit double figures in scoring. Niels Giffey only had 4 points, but he snagged 11 rebounds and played incredible defense in the victory effort.

The icing on the cake is that Duke lost yesterday and Syracuse lost today. Greatness is not an accident. UConn makes the Sweet 16 while everyone else falters... sound familiar?

What a team, what a win, what a season. I'll see you in New York.