clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Men’s Basketball: Takeaways From UConn’s Win Over East Carolina

The Huskies ended the regular season on a high note.

Ian Bethune/The UConn Blog

While star guard Alterique Gilbert missed the game due to injury, Jalen Adams returned to the starting lineup and led the Huskies to an 82-73 win on the road to wrap up regular season play. Here are our takeaways from the Huskies’ first road (and last) road win of the season.

Jalen Adams impressive in his return

Megan Gauer: After missing eight games with a MCL sprain, Jalen Adams was impressive in his return to the court against East Carolina. The senior recorded his second double-double of the season with 13 points and 12 assists. While Adams did not shoot the ball particularly well, he did an excellent job facilitating the Huskies’ offense, especially with the absence of Alterique Gilbert. He finished the game with the bucket or assist on over 50 percent of UConn’s made field goals.

Dan Madigan: After shaking off a little bit of rust, Adams looked great against East Carolina. His ability to distribute was something we haven’t always seen a lot of during his time at UConn, but it certainly was working on Sunday. He looked comfortable dishing out assists to his teammates and showed a ton of passion and energy during his time on the floor. All things considered, it was a nearly perfect outcome for Adams as he prepares to try and lead UConn on another miracle conference tournament run.

Unselfish basketball helps UConn finally get a road win

MG: UConn finally got a true road win, for the first time in over a year (and the last time they played at ECU). Part of what got the Huskies the win was the way they shared the ball today. With 20 assists on 30 made field goals, UConn’s assisted shot rate of 66.7 percent tied their second best of the season. Their 20 assists were also the most this season since the 22 they had against Syracuse and UMass Lowell in November. The Huskies’ unselfish play was largely driven by Jalen Adams, but Christian Vital and Tarin Smith also had three assists apiece.

Sophomores continue to improve and impress

MG: UConn’s starting sophomores, Tyler Polley and Josh Carlton, have continued to improve tremendously through the season and both posted impressive performances against ECU. Polley tied his career high with five made 3-point field goals, shooting 71 percent from beyond the arc and 70 percent from the floor in the victory. Carlton continues to excel in the post, recording another double-double with a team high 20 points and 10 rebounds. He also shot 8-9 from the floor. Both Polley and Carlton were just two points short of new career highs.

DM: Adams’ return kind of overshadowed two stellar performances from these underclassmen. Polley and Carlton looked confident throughout the game and carried the offense for stretches. Over the course of the year, it’s been incredible to see their development and turn into quality starters and two-way players.

If Gilbert can come back at full strength for the conference tournament opener, these two sophomores and an inspired Adams makes a tournament run a real possibility for this UConn team.