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Final Score: UConn Men’s Basketball Comes Back to Beat Memphis, 65-62

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The Huskies trailed for most of the game but closed in and pulled out an impressive win.

Jalen Adams puts up two of his game-high 19 points.
Ian Bethune/The UConn Blog

Despite dealing with an illness, Jalen Adams scored a game-high 19 points, 17 in the second half, to help UConn take down Memphis, 65-62, in front of 9,631 fans at the XL Center. It’s the Huskies’ sixth victory in their past seven games.

The Huskies were down by as many as 17 points at one point and trailed by 14 at the break, mostly due to poor shooting rather than shot selection. Connecticut (13-12, 8-5 AAC) hit 33% from the floor and just 16.7% from three in the first half. It finished a more respectable 43% FG and 33% 3FG.

The Huskies chipped away at the lead slowly to start the second half, cutting the Memphis (18-9, 8-6 AAC) advantage to eight with 16:26 to play. The Tigers responded by pushing the lead back up to 15 as it appeared this one would be getting away.

But UConn kept firing. Adams knocked down a three that cut the lead to 51-46 with 9:42 remaining. The Tigers answered once again, building their advantage back up to 10. The Huskies kept battling, and Adams confidently drilled another three that got it back to five, 58-53, with 5:11 to go.

Christian Vital had a very nice lay-in and big men Kentan Facey and Amida Brimah hit a pair of free throws to get UConn within one, 60-59.

Adams took care of the rest. The Roxbury, Massachusetts native hit a gorgeous runner in the lane to put UConn up 61-60 with 1:59 to go. He added six assists, two rebounds, and two steals to his final stat line.

The Huskies’ defense held off one final flurry from Memphis with Vital punctuating the comeback with a wide open dunk. Vital finished with 13 points on the night.

Facey just missed another double-double, grabbing 10 boards to go along with eight points while Brimah scored 11. The big men were pushed around early but held their own down the stretch. The Husky offense was in sync, as UConn scored 24 points off 17 Memphis turnovers while committing just eight of its own.

The win pushes UConn above .500 for the first time this season and into fourth place in the conference standings, looking up at Houston, who the Huskies visit next week. Kevin Ollie’s squad travels down to Philadelphia next to play the Temple Owls at 4 p.m. on Sunday in the Liacouras Center.