HARTFORD, Conn. - Jeff Adrien scored 21 points, Hasheem Thabeet had 20 and second-ranked Connecticut remained unbeaten by dominating down low against undersized Fairfield in a 75-55 victory last night.
Adrien also grabbed 14 rebounds while Thabeet added 11 rebounds and six blocks for the Huskies (11-0), who have won 64 consecutive games against in-state opponents. Their last loss to a Connecticut team came against Hartford in 1986, Jim Calhoun's first season as coach.
Calhoun was concerned his team might have a letdown in this one after rallying for an overtime victory against Gonzaga last Saturday. He also worried that his players might look ahead to Monday's Big East opener against Georgetown.
But UConn, led by their 7-3 center Thabeet, shot 50 percent from the field and outscored Fairfield, 48-22, in the paint.
Greg Nero scored 16 points for the Stags (8-4), who had won seven straight.
Thabeet and Adrien combined to score 26 points in the first half, and UConn overcame a slow start to take 42-26 lead at halftime. The Huskies took control with a 21-5 run in which Thabeet scored 10 points and Adrien six, all on dunks or baskets in close.
Adrien began an 8-0 spurt with a dunk, putting UConn on top 15-14 midway through the half and the Huskies never trailed after that. *