Thursday, March 4, 2010
With everything on the line, UConn comes out with a performance like this. Lackluster, unenergetic, and uninspired. Why was everyone playing hot potato with the ball and not taking good shots? They were turning the ball over by passing it over the defense. Everyone has a bad shooting night, it happens, but it shouldn’t effect the entire offense. They did play solid defense and rebounded well enough to win this game, but the offense stuttered and stalled with air balls, missed lay-ups, and sloppy decision making and that falls squarely on the backcourt. They couldn’t find their way into the lane and settled for off-balanced jumpers. It was an ugly performance and when they should’ve played with an enormous amount of energy, there was a lot of shaking heads, lingering after non-calls, and drooping shoulders. It all ended up being the worst offensive output of the season and at the worst possible time.
Dyson couldn’t of hit lay-up. The ball bounced off every inch of the rim without dropping but he settled for those shots. He didn’t force the action and began to defer, which led to a ton of turnovers. His decision making had a lot to do with UConn’s offensive woes. He relied too heavily on his jumper, which he knew wasn’t there. He needed to get to the line and sink some free throws to find his stroke and he couldn’t. It all added up to a horrible performance.
Walker started out the game hot, hitting two early threes, but that was it for the first half. In the second half, he opened up with an air ball and began missing shot after shot. Dyson’s shooting woes seemed to be catching. He didn’t get into the lane like in previous games and wasn’t getting to the line that he had been feasting on. He looked to revert back to the old Walker with turnovers and poor decision making.
Robinson hit an early jumper and it looked like he was primed for a solid night, but he disappeared too. He wasn’t getting the boards and put-backs that he was in the previous games. When he did get the ball in the post, he threw the ball away without taking a shot. He needs to shot the ball, but with one game left in the regular season of his senior year, he is what he is, a dunker and an inconsistent three point threat.
Edwards had a poor start to the game, having a turnover in his first couple of seconds. He was getting fouled in post but they couldn’t consistently get the ball to him. He did well on the boards and was the most effective player tonight, but he needs to limit his turnovers. Oriakhi was ineffective and needs to show a lot more. Majok had a foul in his first three minutes, but also had a dunk and put-back early on, but he needs to slow down with the ball in his hands. He rushes things and turns the ball over. Okwandu had an air ball and not much else.
Beverly had his most aggressive game of the year and with no one else stepping up, he filled the void. He just couldn’t find the basket either and missed a bunch of shots, but he also had a pretty assist. It was good to see Coombs-McDaniel hit that jumper, but where was he earlier in the ballgame?
It was a real shame to see this type of performance at such a crucial time. It just might of cost them the at-large bid. It was the body language and energy that was most disappointing though. Even if shots aren’t falling, it shouldn’t effect their demeanor. All the momentum they had garnered from their previous victories, all the strides they had taken in their game, have now hit a brick wall. It’s tough to start over again in your last game of the regular season.