Losing 6 out of 7 moved Villanova from being in the top-25 to being at risk of not making the Big East Tournament. The Wildcats big problem had been poor defense. They began to figure the defense out when they had the tough loss to Georgetown, and has suddenly become much more effective in contesting shots and forcing turnovers.
It came together for Villanova today, with a 67-65 upset over UConn. The Huskies had won 10 straight games and were tied for 3d in the Big East.
Villanova came out strong against UConn. Corey Stokes led the team in the first half and 'Nova had a 14 point lead with 3:29 left in the half, but UConn went on a 9-1 run to close to within 6 by halftime. UConn made several runs to tie the game in the second half, and even take a brief lead. Villanova, though, kept answering.
It seemed that the performance of guards Scottie Reynolds and Stokes convinced UConn point guard A.J. Price that he and the guards needed to answer. Rather than work it inside to the Thabeet, Robinson or Adrien -- where the Huskies had the clear advantage -- Price and Austrie took the majority of the shots. Heck, Price took more shots (22) than the combined efforts of Thabeet, Robinson and Adrien (21). Price ended up leading his team with 16 points, but he was a dismal 6-22 to get there.
Price had been brilliant for UConn in their winning streak. You have to love a competitive player, but this time he made it about himself rather than the team. And it cost his team.