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UConn hangs on, defeats New Hampshire

Updated 12:38 am, Friday, November 30, 2012

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  • New Hampshire's Chris Pelcher, left, shoots over Connecticut's Phillip Nolan during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Storrs, Conn., Thursday, Nov. 29, 2012. (AP Photo/Fred Beckham) Photo: Fred Beckham, Associated Press / FR153656 AP
    New Hampshire's Chris Pelcher, left, shoots over Connecticut's Phillip Nolan during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Storrs, Conn., Thursday, Nov. 29, 2012. (AP Photo/Fred Beckham) Photo: Fred Beckham, Associated Press

 

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In an anemic offensive effort from both sides, unranked UConn made enough plays -- barely -- to hold off New Hampshire 61-53 and avoid a major upset Thursday night at the XL Center.

STAR OF GAME: Ryan Boatright scored 19 points on 5-of-10 shooting and added five assists. Boatright's reverse layup with 4:40 remaining gave UConn a 50-46 cushion, and he assisted on an Enosch Wolf dunk on the ensuing possession.

KEY TO THE WIN: New Hampshire drew within three points, 46-43, with six minutes left, but the Huskies, who struggled mightily on offense all night, found answers from Tyler Olander, Wolf and Boatright. An Omar Calhoun 3-point play on a pull-up jumper with 1:42 remaining put UConn up by 11, essentially sealing the victory.

WORTH NOTING: The first 20 minutes, in particular, were a miserable on all accounts: The two teams combined to go 1-for-18 from 3-point range and weren't much better inside the arc, either. UConn, plagued by poor shot selection and some flat-out poor shooting, converted just 9-of-29 attempts. Conversely, UNH went 8-for-34 (23.5 percent).

• Olander, who has battled foul trouble for most of the season, scored eight points and pulled in just four rebounds in 16 minutes. He fouled out with 27 seconds remaining and UConn leading by six.

• Freshman shooting guard Omar Calhoun has now hit double-figures in five of the past six games. He registered 16 points and eight rebounds in 37 minutes.

• One game after making eight 3-pointers in 13 possessions, UConn connected on just one of its 14 long-range attempts.