(HARTFORD, Conn.) — Shabazz Napier scored a career-high 34 points as No. 24 Connecticut outlasted 20th-ranked Memphis 86-81 in overtime.
Ryan Boatright added 21 points for the Huskies, (20-5, 8-4 AAC) who defeated the Tigers for the second time this season.
UConn forced 18 Memphis turnovers while committing just six themselves.
“You have got to have guards in this game,” UConn coach Kevin Ollie said. “We have some terrific bigs and Memphis has some terrific bigs, but at the end of the day, the guards can make so much happen on the perimeter and break defenses down.”
Guard Joe Jackson led the Tigers (19-6, 8-4) with 24 points and seven assists.
The game was tied at 69 at the end of regulation and Connecticut started overtime on a 7-2 run. But Memphis cut it to 76-74 after a Michael Dixon hit a 3-pointer.
Napier responded with his fifth three-pointer of the game and the Huskies held on for the victory.
“All you can ask for is a shot to tie or win the game,” Memphis coach Josh Pastner said. “We had our chance.”
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Natalia Hepworth, EastIdahoNews.com
Seth Fiegerman, CNN