BC-BKC--South Florida-UConn,2nd Ld-Writethru
STORRS, Conn. (AP) — UConn honored one of the greatest 3-point shooters of all-time on Sunday, then won a game without making a shot from behind the arc.
Josh Carlton scored 16 points and pulled down nine rebounds as UConn held off South Florida 60-58.
Alterique Gilbert added 15 for the Huskies (14-15, 5-11 American), who retired the No. 34 of Hall of Famer Ray Allen at halftime.
The Huskies missed all 15 of their 3-point attempts after making at least one in 338 consecutive games, a streak that went back more than nine years.
“Players just couldn’t handle the pressure of a shooter of that caliber being in the building,” joked UConn coach Dan Hurley.
David Collins had 17 points and Alexis Yetna added 15 for USF (18-11, 7-9 American), which had a chance to win or send the game into overtime.
But the Bulls long inbounds pass with 2.6 seconds left was intercepted by Gilbert, who had just made one of two free throws.
The Huskies shot under 39 percent for the game, but USF made just 33 percent of its shots (19 of 58), and was just 3 of 19 on 3-pointers.
Carlton had 12 points and seven rebounds in the first half and UConn had a 28-27 lead at the break.
USF trailed for much of the game before taking a 48-46 lead on a 3-pointer from Laquincy Rideau with just over 6 minutes to play. That capped a 9-0 USF run that saw the Bulls hold UConn without a field goal for more than seven minutes.
UConn fought back and led 59-56 before Sidney Wilson fouled Collins on a 3-point attempt from the right wing with just 3.5 seconds left.
But USF’s sophomore star missed the second of his three foul shots after a UConn timeout.
“We wouldn’t be in the game if it wasn’t for David, and we wouldn’t have 18 wins if it wasn’t for David Collins,” said South Florida coach Brian Gregory.
The win snapped a six-game losing streak for UConn, which had not won since star Jalen Adams suffered a knee injury in the first half of a loss to Temple on Feb. 6.
“It was very important for us just to get the win,” said Gilbert. “It’s like a weight is off our shoulders a little bit.”
South Florida: The Bulls lead Division I in free throw attempts (808) and made 17 of 22 against the Huskies.
UConn: Allen joins former women’s star Rebecca Lobo as the only two players in the school’s history to have their numbers put in the rafters. Lobo has a similar ceremony on Saturday. The school has just one criterion for retiring numbers — enshrinement in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
“It’s a special place,” Allen said. “It’s the reason that I continue to always come back. I want these young kids to understand that it’s a privilege to play here.”
A WIN IS A WIN
UConn tied its win total from last season, when they went 14-18 under Kevin Ollie.
Hurley said he wasn’t pleased with some of the shots the Huskies took on Sunday, especially 3-pointers that came off the dribble.
“You’ve got to try to go by your man, get a piece of the paint, land and either put something up on the rim or spray it out to the 3-point line for someone else to shoot a toes-to-the-line rhythm three,” he said.
South Florida: The Bulls travel to New Orleans to take on Tulane. The Bulls are tyring to become just the fifth USF team to win as many as 19 games. This is the best season for a South Florida team since 2011-12, when they went 22-14.
UConn: The Huskies play their final home game of the season on Thursday night against Temple.
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