Friday, March 21, 2008

Gut-Check Time

Were UConn's hopes for advancing deep into the NCAA tournament carried off the court with A.J. Price midway through the first half? We'll see.

Price sprained his left knee while driving for a layup at the 9:39 mark of the first half. He was carried off the floor by Hasheem Thabeet and walk-on John Lindner. A few minutes later, he was taken into the locker room with trainer James Doran.

Price returned to the bench with 3:17 left in the half on crutches, with a huge ice pack on his left knee. He watched the rest of the half from the end of the bench. UConn trails a San Diego team that isn't overly impressive by any stretch, 34-29.

UConn seemed to lack fire from the opening tap, even with Price in the lineup. Without him, there apear to be a lot of slumped shoulders and a lack of leadership on the floor. Jeff Adrien is playing with some heart -- 11 points, vocal leadership. Otherwise, the Huskies appear to lack energy.

It'll be interesting to see what happens in the latter half. This team has shown resiliency before, most notably when they learned the night before that they would be down two key players (Jerome Dyson and Doug Wiggins) for their game with then-No. 8 Indiana at Assembly Hall. The Huskies managed to gut out a 68-63 win as everybody stepped up. That was one of 10 straight wins for the Huskies, most of them without Dyson.

Of course, it was A.J. Price who stepped up the most during that 10-game streak.

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